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Southland Tales (2006)

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During a three day heat wave just before a huge 4th of July celebration, an action star stricken with amnesia meets up with a porn star who is developing her own reality TV project, and a policeman who holds the key to a vast conspiracy.


Richard Kelly


Richard Kelly
4,296 ( 398)
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Carlos Amezcua Carlos Amezcua ... Himself
Curtis Armstrong ... Dr. Soberin Exx
Robert Benz Robert Benz ... Tab Taverner
Todd Berger ... Bing Zinneman
Joe Campana ... Brandt Huntington
Chris Andrew Ciulla ... UPU 4 Officer 3 (as Chris Ciulla)
Rebekah Del Rio ... Vanessa Vera Cruz
Aaron Dillar Aaron Dillar ... Jimmy Hermosa
Nora Dunn ... Cyndi Pinziki
Shari Dunn Shari Dunn ... USI Dent Reporter
Michele Durrett Michele Durrett ... Starla Von Luft
Jon Falcone Jon Falcone ... Soldier Falcon
Leila Feinstein Leila Feinstein ... Herself
Jaret Gardiner Jaret Gardiner ... Shane Laverne
Janeane Garofalo ... General Teena MacArthur


Southland Tales is an ensemble piece set in the futuristic landscape of Los Angeles on July 4, 2008, as it stands on the brink of social, economic and environmental disaster. Boxer Santaros is an action star who's stricken with amnesia. His life intertwines with Krysta Now, an adult film star developing her own reality television project, and Ronald Taverner, a Hermosa Beach police officer who holds the key to a vast conspiracy. Written by TheGuyInThePj's

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Have A Nice Apocalypse See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, violence, sexual material and some drug content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »


Official Sites:

DVD site [Japan] | MySpace page


France | Germany | USA



Release Date:

7 December 2007 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

A káosz birodalma See more »

Filming Locations:

Hermosa Beach, California, USA See more »


Box Office


$17,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$123,428, 18 November 2007, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$275,380, 20 December 2007

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$374,743, 29 June 2008
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs



Sound Mix:

DTS | SDDS | Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Jonathon Ross dismissed Southland Tales as being "like a bad, overlong student film". See more »


In the introductory titles, as Pilot Abilene narrates, there is a white map of the United States that implodes towards the screen as he says "Interstate travel visas were required for each state." Right before the map implodes, you can see that the state of Wisconsin is unaligned. See more »


[first lines]
Private Pilot Abilene: [narration] In the aftermath of nuclear attacks in Texas, America found itself on the brink of anarchy.
[overlapping news reports]
Private Pilot Abilene: World War III had begun.
Private Pilot Abilene: The accelerated conflict in the Middle East placed significant restrictions on American access to oil. Alternative fuel sources became a lucrative commodity. Americans were transfixed by the terrorist's threat, and were willing to prevent another attack by any means necessary. Military checkpoints were erected at each State line. ...
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Crazy Credits

After the credits, a logo appears of a thumbprint over an American flag with the words: "DON'T TOUCH ME" See more »


References Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937) See more »


Written by Peter Hayes and Robert Turner (as Robert Been)
Performed by Black Rebel Motorcycle Club
Courtesy of RCA Records Label
By Arrangement with Sony BMG Music Entertainment and The Echo Label Ltd
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

A masterpiece of disastrous proportions
10 May 2008 | by Dragoneyed363See all my reviews

I had not heard much about Southland Tales when I started to rent it. The only reason I was getting it was because I will watch anything with Sarah Michelle Gellar and always enjoy her even if I do not enjoy the movie. I had no idea what I was in store for. While watching this movie, I just became so, entranced. From beginning to end, I was loving every second and I could not figure out why. Maybe because it is so eccentric and well executed that it seems weird to like it for how odd it is. Maybe the performances were giving the film it's edge where the plot was so original and crisp. No, the real reason I enjoyed this movie is because it was so incredibly interesting and fun to watch, and it appeared to me as a perfect film throughout my whole viewing, when in reality it is one big mess. Yes, this is quite perfectly the most beautiful piece of junk I have ever seen, and I can not get enough of it!

Allow me to explain further for those who are unsure what I am saying. This film is an apocalypse-themed string of events that seem to make absolutely no sense sometimes as the film progresses. There are no stand out performances, only ones that intesify the artsy atmosphere the film tries to create. At that same time though, Richard Kelly does not attempt to make it anything more than it is; it seems as though the film is just there, no more, no less. What I love about Southland Tales is it is not afraid to test it's viewers. People who hate this film just do not understand it usually. They think it has no creative merit, no purpose but to see how random it can be. That is not the case. I, in my honest opinion, believe the film is as perfect as it can be without actually being any good, and that is the complete opposite of hating it. In the end, there is really a lot of questions as to why this film is so good if it contains so many problems, and that is because it does the one thing a movie is meant to do, entertain, and it does that unconditionally.

Those who say they are appalled by it's lack of intelligence really are judging the film in the wrong way. Those who say it was boring, it just might not be the film for you. I, for one, enjoy it more and more with every viewing and my opinion on why I love it so much, I can never exactly pin down. The movie is an apocalypse within itself, but masks it all with what the creators want us to believe is pure genius, and I completely respect and admire that in every way. Those are just my views, take them or leave them.

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