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La Bamba

  • Drama
  • 1987
  • Luis Valdez
  • 104 mins
  • 15

Summary

Biopic of 1950s singer Ritchie Valens, whose promising career was cut short by the fatal plane crash in 1959 that also claimed the lives of Buddy Holly and the Big Bopper. The film focuses on Valens' thwarted romance with Donna Ludwig and his rivalry with his older step-brother. Starring Lou Diamond Phillips, Esai Morales, Rosana De Soto, Marshall Crenshaw and Danielle Von Zerneck, with music by Los Lobos.

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Review

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Most pop biopics are tepid affairs, but the same cannot be said for director Luis Valdez's engrossing re-creation of Ritchie Valens's short life. Los Angeles band Los Lobos perform impassioned versions of the young man's songs, and their playing is mirrored by Lou Diamond Phillips's intense performance, which brings the 1950s rock 'n' roll star to life with a lot of vibrant detail while generally avoiding the usual clichés of the genre. As Ritchie's bad-boy half-brother, Esai Morales also contributes to the authenticity.

How to watch

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Credits

Cast

rolename
Ritchie Valens / Richard ValenzuelaLou Diamond Phillips
Bob MoralesEsai Morales
Connie ValenzuelaRosana De Soto
Rosie MoralesElizabeth Peña
Donna LudwigDanielle Von Zerneck
Bob KeeneJoe Pantoliano
Ted QuillinRick Dees
Buddy HollyMarshall Crenshaw
Jackie WilsonHoward Huntsberry
Eddie CochranBrian Setzer
LeloDaniel Valdez
Big BopperStephen Lee

Crew

rolename
DirectorLuis Valdez

Details

Theatrical distributor
Columbia-Cannon-Warner
Language
English
Guidance
Swearing and nudity.
Available on
video, DVD and Blu-ray
Formats
Colour
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