GREGORY NAVA | USA, UK | 1983 | 140 MIN | R
Hailed by Variety upon its release as “the first epic in the history of American independents,” Gregory Nava’s masterpiece is a moving look at the immigration experience, framed through the experiences of siblings fleeing the Guatemalan Civil War. Faced with persecution in their home country, Enrique and Rosa set out on the long, perilous trip to “el norte.” The siblings’ trek through Mexico and across the border into Southern California is fraught with danger, and Nava captures their journey in unflinching, hair-raising detail. Once in California, Enrique and Rosa strive to embrace their new life, but find that life in the promised land of “el norte” presents a host of new challenges. One of the definitive cinematic portrayals of Latin American immigration, El Norte explores the motivations and struggles of people escaping oppression for a better life in the USA with heartbreaking, eye-opening clarity.
Cast: Zaide Silvia Gutiérrez, David Villalpando, Ernesto Gómez Cruz, Alicia del Lago
“A Grapes of Wrath for our time.” –Roger Ebert
American cinema has always held a mirror to the country’s ever-changing cultural and political landscape, giving the American people a chance to experience their deepest fears and loftiest ambitions magnified by the power of the silver screen. With State of the Union, PFS invites audiences to explore the country’s past and imagine its future through films that rigorously examine American leaders, institutions, and values while still being great works of entertainment.