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American Me (1992)

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No Score Yet...

Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 2
Fresh: 2 | Rotten: 0

audience

90

liked it
Average Rating: 4.1/5
User Ratings: 9,908

My Rating

Movie Info

Edward J. Olmos made his directorial bow with the powerhouse crime saga American Me. Olmos stars as street-gang leader Santana, who during his 18 years in Folsom Prison rules over all the drug-and-murder activities behind bars. Upon his release, Santana goes back to his old neighborhood, intending to lead a peaceful, crime-free life. But his old gang buddies force him back into his old habits. The omniprescene of the "Mexican Mafia" in the southwest is sufficient to make this film a daunting,

R,

Drama

Floyd Mutrux

Jan 7, 2003

MCA Universal Home Video

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All Critics (13) | Top Critics (6) | Fresh (6) | Rotten (2) | DVD (3)

The film's intent to serve as a cautionary tale is admirable, but Olmos acts better than he directs, and the film is shapeless and disjointed. .

February 12, 2007 Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com
EmanuelLevy.Com

Worth seeing for Olmos' performance alone.

July 25, 2002
eFilmCritic.com

Audience Reviews for American Me

This one could have easily been titled Mexican-American History X. It's a little less polished but every bit as captivating.
March 8, 2009
flixsterman
Randy Tippy

Super Reviewer

Gut-wrenching, brutal, and powerful, American Me is not enjoyable in the conventional sense, but stands out as one of the most impressive purely dramatic offerings. It's a story of violence and its dehumanizing consequences that, in some ways, is reminiscent of The Godfather, with characters that echo those from the Puzo/Ford-Coppola epic.

Director Edward James Olmos fearlessly takes aim at the culture of machismo which has enveloped so many inner city youths. This is an unrelenting condemnation of that lifestyle, a portrait of the sort of brutality that violence begets. In my opinion, one of the very few "gang" films that seemed to get it right and doesn't try to glorify the lifestyle, but instead show consequences.
November 25, 2008
DrBenway
El Hombre Invisible

Super Reviewer

"American Me" is arguably the most significant film not discussed in the same breath with crime epics such as "The Godfather." It was clearly made, both consciously and perhaps subconsciously to be the Mexican Godfather film and that is hardly a bad thing. Its honesty regarding the emotional costs of violence and murder are on par with that film. I don't know what to say to anyone who critiques Edward James Olmos. First, this actor's capacity to convey a complicated range of emotions without words is absolutely staggering and has been seen to great effect in many great films including "Blade Runner." Additionally, he is inarguably the premiere Latino / Chicano filmmaker and actor of all time. If you look at the films he has been involved with, think about how they have dominated the way Hispanic people, Mexicans in particular, have been seen by others who would, largely, not even know of the experiences of their neighbors. "American Me" is so unflinching that, after seeing it, I had to see it again to believe it was actually made by or released by a major studio. Once upon a time studio films featured honest portraits of life but rarely any more. "American Me" tho hardly the knee-slapping comedy some reviewer wanted or expected, conveys an honest sense of the life lived by many without the hope of education or prosperity but with the same need for respect and something bigger than themselves to believe in that you or anyone else has and lives their life by. If you want to see a life perhaps very different than yours depicted with uncommon honesty, watch this film.
October 19, 2008
matertenebraum

Super Reviewer

Montoya Santana: I'm sorry to hear about Neto.
Yolanda: I don't know what to say to you.
Montoya Santana: Whatever, you know.
Yolanda: You're like two people. One is like a kid. Doesn't know how to dance, doesn't know how to make love. That's the one I cared about. But the other one, the other one I hate. The one who knows, the one who has this wrapdown, who knows how to run drugs, who kills people!

Essentially, this movie is the Goodfellas to East LA. Olmos starts as a man who has spent most of his life in prison, where we see him develop gangs from within. Prison does not change him for the better concerning crime, he keep his mind focused on what is the best way to achieve his wants. He is not an evil person, he is against drugs and wants people to coexist peacfully, but methods he goes with are violent. Upon leaving Prison, he likes how things are on the outside, but is not as much a hero as he was inside, it challenges him. There is a very good message that comes with this story, which was based off true events. It is hard and gritty, with a great performance from Olmos.
December 27, 2006
DrZeek

Super Reviewer

    1. Mundo: Relax. You might enjoy it.
    – Submitted by Jesse K (9 months ago)
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