La Bamba Reviews
The story of Ritchie Valens, the teenager who rose to fame in the
late-1950s with hits like "Donna", "Come On, Let's Go" and "La Bamba".
Interesting subject, as Valens was one of the pioneers of rock 'n roll.
His story is also a tragic one, and well-known as such, due to the
plane crash that took the lives of him, Buddy Holly (surely one of rock
'n roll's greatest losses) and The Big Bopper. The day the music
died... (to quote Don McLean).
The musical side largely lives up to expectations - good tracks,
well-performed and with some great nostalgic moments.
However, the personal side is quite uneven. Particularly bad is the
brother angle. This seems overblown and over-dramatic, and is certainly
not helped by an over-the-top, hammy performance from Esai Morales.
Too many scenes which are dull or cringingly hammy.
Overall: worth watching from a music history perspective, but you'll
have to get through some dull/hammy scenes and acting to get to the
So, partly missing a star for that, but it was entertaining and mostly the acting was good, so I might've only taken half a star if it weren't for the terrible chemistry and stilted acting in most of the Ritchie/Donna scenes. And the snake. Even snakes are supposed to be safe and happy all of the time.