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Fidel Castro rises to power in Cuba.


David Attwood


Stephen Tolkin (screenplay by), Georgie Anne Geyer (based on the book "Guerrilla Prince" written by) | 1 more credit »

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3 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Víctor Huggo Martin Víctor Huggo Martin ... Fidel Castro
Gael García Bernal ... Che Guevara
Patricia Velasquez ... Mirta
Cecilia Suárez ... Celia Sanchez
Maurice Compte ... Raul Castro
Margarita Rosa de Francisco ... Naty Revuelta (as Margarita d'Francisco)
Enrique Arce ... Rafael
José María Yazpik ... Camilo Cienfuegos
Manuel Sevilla Manuel Sevilla ... Abel Santamaria
Alejandra Gollas ... Haydeé Santamaría (as Alejandra Gollás)
Ernesto Godoy Ernesto Godoy ... Huber Matos
Guillermo Díaz ... Universo Sanchez
Tony Plana ... Gen. Fulgencio Battista
Mel Rodriguez ... Calixto Morales
Bobby Plasencia Bobby Plasencia ... Faustino Perez


Fact-based (?) drama about the rise of Fidel Castro from a respected lawyer in Cuba to rabble-rousing dissident to power-hungry ruler of his nation. One wonders about the facts in this very homogenized presentation though. The story goes something like this: Fidel meets future wife, gets married, has a child, political aspirations get in way of family, Fidel has a politically-motivated affair, gets thrown in jail, gets expelled from the country, comes back and fights out of the jungle for a few years, casts then leader Baptistsa out of power and seizes leadership. Once seizing power, he kills everyone who opposes him or disagrees with him - although once again this aspect is very watered down. The promised idea of a free election is also quickly dismissed as not in the people's best interests. Fidel's immense popularity with the people at the time of his coming into power is depicted, but the anti-Castro thought is only briefly touched upon in a discussion with a former restaurant ... Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


He fought for freedom. He settled for power.


Biography | Drama


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Release Date:

27 January 2002 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Fidel & Che See more »

Filming Locations:

Dominican Republic See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Showtime Networks See more »
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Technical Specs




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Carmen Zapata's last acting role. See more »

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User Reviews

"¡Fidel!" is interesting in content but disappointing in production.
31 January 2002 | by fkerrSee all my reviews

Some TV productions of late have been fantastic, and many are duds. `¡Fidel!' is interesting for content but disappointing in production. Huggo Martin has good moments in the title role, but mostly he walks through the lines without imparting believability to them. Other cast members do the same. Of course, Fidel Castro is a fascinating character. Viewing this film does flesh out a Yankee's knowledge of his life. Yet, so much remains unanswered. The first segment portrays him as an idealistic leader of the justified overthrow of General Batista. His failures seem somehow related to lack of realistic planning, but he triumphs in the end at least in part by his reliance on subordinates. Then, the second segment takes us to the Castro government in power. Here, we see a megalomaniac who makes his own decisions regardless of reality or the opinions of others. He sells out his revolution out to the Soviets for no apparent reason other than his hate for the U. S. The regime becomes a disaster for the Cuban people. The film makes no effort to explain the abrupt change. Is it just the taste of power, or is there an illness within Castro's mind? Were we deceived at first? Castro and the Che Guevara character often throw allegations toward the CIA, but all of that is also left vague. A viewer interested in the subject here can only come away terribly unsatisfied.

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