American Me (1992)


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Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

In this crime saga, Edward James Olmos stars as street-gang leader Santana, who during his 18 years in Folsom Prison ruled over all the drug-and-murder activities behind bars. Upon his release, Santana intends to lead a peaceful, crime-free life. However, his gang buddies force him back into his old habits.

Rating: R (adult situations/language, nudity, violence)
Genre: Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Floyd Mutrux, Desmond Nakano
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jan 7, 2003
MCA Universal Home Video


as Santana, Santana Mon...

as Mundo

as Little Puppet

as Pedro

as Esperanza

as Young Santana

as Young JD

as Dornan (uncredited)

as Young Mundo

as Tattoo Artist

as Zoot Riot Bystander

as Young Sailor

as Older Sailor

as Police Officer

as Street Mechanic

as Street Mechanic

as Restaurant Owner

as Juvie Hall Attacker

as Blonde Kid in Yard

as El Chucko

as Juvie Officer

as Tony Scagnelli Jr.

as Visiting Room Guard

as Visiting Room Guard

as Paulito (age 7)

as JD's Friend

as Cheetah

as Drug Thief

as Willie-Vato

as Paulito (age 11)

as Tony Scagnelli Jr.

as Segregation Guard

as Processing Guard

as Processing Guard

as Mundo's Attorney

as Paulito (age 15)

as Mico (age 9)

as Shoe Salesman

as Neto (age 15)

as Bodyguard

as Don Antonio Scagnell...

as Arthur J.

as Ronnie Little

as Eddie Johnson

as Deacon

as BGF Member

as Julie's Mother
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for American Me

All Critics (13) | Top Critics (6)

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Top Critic

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Full Review… | June 9, 2008
Top Critic

Full Review… | May 20, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic

May 12, 2001
Rolling Stone
Top Critic

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Washington Post
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for American Me

Although there's a stumble on a believable performance from the supporting cast and transitions, the film is an intimidating and pulse-pounding force of truth. American Me's hard-hitting exploitation and direction/production/performance from Olmos carries the film as an ominous and exceptional reality check. 4/5

Eugene Bernabe
Eugene Bernabe

Super Reviewer

This one could have easily been titled Mexican-American History X. It's a little less polished but every bit as captivating.

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.

El Hombre Invisible

Super Reviewer

American Me Quotes

– Submitted by Jesse K (21 months ago)

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