I Am Cuba (Soy Cuba)

Critics Consensus

Visually absorbing and formally audacious, I Am Cuba (Soy Cuba) opens a long-buried time capsule that has lost none of its captivating power.



Total Count: 34


Audience Score

User Ratings: 4,528
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I Am Cuba (Soy Cuba) Photos

Movie Info

Hidden away in the Soviet archives for three decades, "I Am Cuba" is a wildly schizophrenic celebration of Communist kitsch, mixing Slavic solemnity with Latin sensuality -- a whirling, feverish dance through both the sensuous decadence of Batista's Havana and the grinding poverty and oppression of the Cuban people. In four stories of the revolution, Mikhail Kalatov's astonishingly acrobatic camera takes the viewer on a rapturous roller-coaster ride of bathing beauties, landless peasants, fascist police, and student revolutionaries.


Critic Reviews for I Am Cuba (Soy Cuba)

All Critics (34) | Top Critics (10)

  • Some of the most exhilarating camera movements and most luscious black-and-white cinematography you'll ever see inhabit this singular, delirious 141-minute communist propaganda epic.

    Sep 17, 2007 | Full Review…
  • Cinema's singular dream, so often betrayed elsewhere, is to deliver such visions as this.

    Feb 9, 2006 | Full Review…
    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • It is one of the most visually hypnotic films ever -- and that's not hyperbole.

    Sep 30, 2005 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…
  • The resulting assault is so epicly impassioned it's less about Cuba per se than the fusillade of movement, shadow, light, vertigo, and landscape on the viewer's tender optic nerves.

    Sep 13, 2005
  • It is a dream of life in which everything is reduced to black and white. Or as the rhetoric used to go, you are either part of the problem or part of the solution. Nothing was ever quite that simple.

    Jan 15, 2005 | Rating: 5/5
  • It really is a neglected classic.

    Dec 2, 2002 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for I Am Cuba (Soy Cuba)

  • Jan 09, 2012
    Good from an historical perspective but not from a viewing one. The best copies of this film and woefully hard on the eyes. An early Soviet look at the outcomes of the Cuban revolution. Naturally a positive one.
    John B Super Reviewer
  • Sep 13, 2011
    Kalatozov constructs an opera of striking visuals, cinematic wonders and groundbreaking technical qualities, featuring the most magnificent camera work on celluloid. The spirit of revolution and rebellion is vivid and alive throughout, but the superb poetry displayed in every frame accentuates more the meaning of true cinema construction rather than the intoxicating Communist propaganda that the Soviet Union wanted to spread in the 60s through the Cuban ideals and their great strength of will to die for an ideal (which, in my honest opinion, was bigger than themselves). 100/100
    Edgar C Super Reviewer
  • May 09, 2011
    A revolutionary cinematographic! Astounding film! Beautiful black and white photography, Kalatozov use a magnificently camera movements plan sequence. Visually hypnotic, great storys with politic and poetry, the fight for a revolution and free oneself of a dictatorial goverment.
    Lucas M Super Reviewer
  • Jul 23, 2009
    B&W set of four stories about Cuba filmed with a communist eye, and a collaboration between Cuba and the USSR. Absolutely beautiful film-making - but I just couldn't engage with it. So those two hours, twenty one minutes felt soooo looonnnnggg. One of those films I should like but don't ... *sigh*. Which means if you want to see it, ignore this review, and see it and you'll love it.
    Lesley N Super Reviewer

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