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El El Norte [Special Edition] [WS] [Criterion Collection] [DVD] [Eng/Spa] [1983]
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Special Features

  • Disc One:
  • New, restored high-definition digital transfer, supervised and approved by director Gregory Nava
  • New audio commentary featuring Nava
  • Theatrical trailer
  • New and improved English subtitle translation
  • Disc Two:
  • In the Service of Shadows: The Making of "El Norte"
  • The Journal of Diego Rodriguez Silva
  • Gallery of Chiapas location-scouting photographs
  • Plus: A booklet featuring a new essay by novelist Héctor Tobar and critic Roger Ebert's 1983 review


El Norte
El Norte is a realistic picture of both the Guatemalan government's oppression of the Quiche Indians and the hard life of illegal immigrants in the United States. After the Guatemalan army destroys their village of San Pedro, two teenage Quiche Mayan Indian siblings journey north (hence El Norte) through Mexico to the United States to start a new life. The film opens with the destruction of the village and the peasants' pointless appeals to the authorities for justice. Realizing that the government is seizing their land, Enrique and Rosa make the difficult decision to leave their people behind. As they journey through Mexico, the siblings encounter a number of helpful individuals who direct them towards the U.S./Mexican border. There they find a "coyote" (a professional human smuggler) and make the frightening run across border. Once across, Enrique and Rosa are introduced to the impossible realities of life as an illegal immigrant in Los Angeles. Living in constant fear of deportation, they struggle to survive as they are exploited by a series of employers. Eventually, their luck takes a turn for the better when the manager of their motel offers Enrique a job. ~ Brian Whitener, Rovi

Cast & Crew

  • Image coming soon
    Zaide Silvia Gutierrez - Rosa Xuncax
  • Image coming soon
    David Villalpando - Enrique Xuncax
  • Image coming soon
    Alicia del Lago - Lupe Xuncax
  • Image coming soon
    Eraclio Zepeda - Pedro
  • Image coming soon
    Stella Quan - Josefita
Product images, including color, may differ from actual product appearance.