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Cuban Blood (2007)

Harvey Keitel , Iben Hjejle , Juan Gerard  |  PG-13 |  DVD
2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Harvey Keitel, Iben Hjejle, Diana Bracho, Gael García Bernal, Gabino Diego
  • Directors: Juan Gerard
  • Writers: Juan Gerard, Letvia Arza-Goderich
  • Producers: Harvey Keitel, Andrew Pfeffer, Bonnie Timmermann, Eberhard Kayser, Francesco Belfiore
  • Format: Color, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Subtitles: Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Velocity / Thinkfilm
  • DVD Release Date: April 18, 2006
  • Run Time: 110 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000EQ5T1U
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #350,063 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Cuban Blood" on IMDb

Editorial Reviews

The specter of revolution hovers over a small Cuban town in 2003's Cuban Blood, director Juan Gerard's first (and, to date, only) feature. Veteran and versatile actor Harvey Keitel, whose involvement clearly helped get the picture made, plays the charismatic Che (no, not that Che), a big fish in the small pond that is Holguin, a picturesque spot that's relatively removed from the pro-Castro, anti-Batista rebellion sweeping the country in 1958. But when the rebels knock out the town's electrical power in the opening scene, an outage that lasts a full year, things start to get a little hairy, and Che and his family (including his grandson, clearly a stand-in for Gerard himself) face some major choices and changes. Granted, it's hardly the most original movie ever made. The use of a seemingly crazy homeless man (played by Georg Stanford Brown) as a prophetic Greek chorus is not an uncommon device; and as several critics have noted, echoes of other movies abound, from Cinema Paradiso and Casablanca to Rebel Without a Cause and more. In fact, Cuban Blood was itself formerly known as Dreaming of Julia, a reference to both the film that's playing in the local cinema when the power goes out and to the real name of the enigmatic "La Gringa," the only American in town (actress Iben Hjejle is actually Danish, though you'd never know it from her perfect, unaccented English). In the end, the promotional material's claim that it's "a star-studded adventure in the tradition of (Sergio Leone's epic) Once Upon a Time in America" is hyperbolic in the extreme. Nonetheless, this film--sometimes amusing, sometimes dramatic, both heartwarming and sad, sentimental but not overly so--will appeal to viewers of all ages. --Sam Graham

Product Description

Harvey Keitel Daniel Lugo and Gael Garcia Bernal star in this action-packed drama about the sacrifices several Cuban revolutionaries must make in their efforts to stand up for what they believe is right.System Requirements:Running Time 87 Mins.Format: DVD MOVIE Genre: ACTION/ADVENTURE Rating: NR UPC: 821575546850 Manufacturer No: VL-54685

Customer Reviews

2.7 out of 5 stars
2.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
..."As you write," he said, "you'll see that time is running out."

Lensed in the Dominican Republic Gerard was denied authorization to film in Cuba but that didn't stop him because he managed to bring in a mellow and naturalistic cinematography through out this entire film. On the first couple of scenes I had to double check the DVD jacket on this film because the opening scene brought to mind "Cinema Paradiso"(which is a fantastic film by the way). In fact, this film is filled with references to classic films: The Roulette Wheel (Casablanca), "chicken clucking" (Rebel Without a Cause), references to Bunuel, "Touch of Evil"; you'll find more. The homeless man (George Stanford Brown) is a reference to Cuban folklore which often uses a black man as a type of Greek chorus.

What this film really is the culmination of a dream. Gerard's wish to honor his family and medium of film that he has loved all of his life. This is the true story of Juan Gerard and all the people in it are real, as are the events depicted. Gerard is actually an architect and engineer (and passionate film lover) but his dream was to make this movie. He and his wife decided to live that dream and Harvey Keitel became an "angel" who believed in Gerard and agreed to produce and star in it. Keitel holds the screen powerfully as the mysterious and secretive grandfather "Che". Brown and Keitel are the only Americans in the cast. Iben Hjejle and Gael Garcia Bernal offer strong support in their key roles. I must say that the first half of the film suffers from stiff delivery of lines, and some overreacting, but stay with it. The last half is much better as the events of the revolution combine for the bittersweet and honest climax.

"Cuban Blood" is sincere first effort of Juan Gerard and one of those films that I wouldn't mine watching again.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Surprised June 15, 2006
A Kid's Review
I have to admit I had no expectations for this movie. It surprised me. Well paced, interesting enough characters an overall feel good flick if thats possible with a backdrop like the cuban revolution.
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1.0 out of 5 stars What the....? December 31, 2007
I have no idea why Harvey Keitel and Gael Garcia Bernal would involve themselves in this taudry but blatent 'Cinema Paridiso' rip-off; but one, sadly, that lacks the charm and sofistication of that amazing Italian film. The child actors are precocious and unendearing, and the performances provided by the remaining adult cast are forced and uninspired. You can almost read the apathy (or shame?) on Mr. Keitel's face. Dreadful.
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3.0 out of 5 stars i love spanish cinema June 22, 2007
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
this was better than expected - honestly, i bought it for gael garcia bernal and because i love any latin american themed movies so i had no expectation of the film
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