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Buena Vista Social Club (1999)

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Aging Cuban musicians whose talents had been virtually forgotten following Castro's takeover of Cuba, are brought out of retirement by Ry Cooder, who travelled to Havana in order to bring the musicians together, resulting in triumphant performances of extraordinary music, and resurrecting the musicians' careers.

Director:

Wim Wenders

Writers:

Wim Wenders (by), Nick Gold (original concept)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 20 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Compay Segundo ... Himself
Eliades Ochoa ... Himself
Ry Cooder ... Himself
Joachim Cooder Joachim Cooder ... Himself
Ibrahim Ferrer ... Himself
Omara Portuondo ... Herself
Rubén González Rubén González ... Himself
Orlando 'Cachaíto' López ... Himself
Amadito Valdés Amadito Valdés ... Himself
Manuel 'Guajiro' Mirabal ... Himself
Barbarito Torres ... Himself
Pío Leyva Pío Leyva ... Himself
Manuel 'Puntillita' Licea Manuel 'Puntillita' Licea ... Himself
Juan de Marcos González Juan de Marcos González ... Himself
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Storyline

A group of legendary Cuban musicians, some as old as their nineties, were brought together by Ry Cooder to record a CD. In this film, we see and hear some of the songs being recorded in Havana. There is also footage from concerts in Amsterdam and New York City's Carnegie Hall. In addition, many of the individual musicians talk about their lives in Cuba and about how they got started in music. Written by George S. Davis

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

cuba | song | concert | singer | guitar | See All (13) »

Taglines:

Cubas Poesie Cubas Musik, Cubas Menschen, Cubas Poesie [The music of Cuba, the people of Cuba, the poetry of Cuba] See more »

Genres:

Documentary | Music

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

PBS [United States]

Country:

Germany | USA | UK | France | Cuba

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

4 June 1999 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Havana Rhapsody See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$127,370, 6 June 1999, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$6,997,620, 30 January 2000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The sequence in the cigar factory was filmed without a permit. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Saturday Night Live: Charlize Theron/Paul Simon (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Quizás, Quizás, Quizás
Written by Osvaldo Farrés
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Cuba delights, Cooder gets the credits
8 August 2005 | by Andrei_CiprianSee all my reviews

This movie was a must for me, not for cinematographic reasons but for the piece of music history it contains. I had heard Ibrahim Ferrer was coming to Romania with Buenos Hermanos Tour. So I tried to find out all about the Buena Vista history. I have found Cuba a far away, resolute place, nevertheless glamorous and melancholic. Popular Cuban music is an absolute jewel that had to be forgotten even in its' own country and then brought back into the limelight by the likes of Cooder and Wenders. Cooder is a scavenger that wanders the exotic musical destinations for the next big hit. The film is centered too much on Cooder, and I find the time allotted to Ibrahim, Omara, Compay, Barbarito, Cachaito and the others (the real musical giants) unsatisfactory. You only get a glimpse and then have to run away for the next character... Yet, Wenders manages to catch the sweetness in the Cuban relaxed lifestyle, beautiful Rembrandt-like sunshine coming through leaves and a touch of history and relaxed musicians in the act of recollecting.


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