Mercedes (Marga Lopez) dances for money with the clients of Salon Mexico, a famous cabaret in Mexico City. Her younger sister Beatriz (Derbez) studies in an expensive private school, paid ... See full summary »
Left alone after her mother runs off with another man and her father kills himself, Elena attempts to make a new life for herself in a new city. Believing he's a friend, Elena goes to ... See full summary »
Poor, hungry peasant Macario longs for just one good meal on the Day of the Dead. After his wife cooks a turkey for him, he meets three apparitions, the Devil, God, and Death. Each asks him... See full summary »
The disaffected wife of a failed civil servant, is thrilled to re-encounter Octavio, a former lover who is now a union activist on the run from a corrupt politician. Hoping to help him, she... See full summary »
Rosario (Palma) becomes a prostitute after losing her father and discovering her boyfriend had a liaison with another woman. In Veracruz, Rosario lives above a sordid cabaret "selling her ... See full summary »
Raphael J. Sevilla
In Xochimilco 1909, María Candelaria and Lorenzo Rafael long for getting married but the odds are against them. Maria Candelaria is segregated for being a prostitute's child and the couple ... See full summary »
Dolores del Rio,
On a small Mexican island dwells a group of Indians who live in the traditional manner and who disdain outsiders. The beautiful Maclovia and the poverty-stricken Jose Maria are in love, but... See full summary »
Carlos López Moctezuma
In a Gothic-styled monastery, a monk named Javier sees the face of another monk, Juan, and suddenly attempts to bludgeon him to death with a heavy crucifix. Both men then relate their own ... See full summary »
Juan Bustillo Oro
In many ways, this film reminds me of the Maxim Gorky play "The Lower Depths" combined with the weepy films about motherhood and sacrifice Hollywood was so fond of making in the 1920s and 30s--such as "Madam X" and "So Big". None of this is meant as criticism--just an attempt to categorize this Mexican film.
The story begins in a cantina in the seedy part of town. Before Violeta (Ninón Sevilla) goes on to sing for the crowd, she goes about this nightclub trying to get the other working girls there to help contribute. It seems that one of their own is about to give birth and her good for nothing pimp boyfriend wants nothing to do with the baby. After doing the right thing and helping the young mother, Violeta's efforts are rewarded by the mother tossing the baby in the garbage! Violeta, despite her circumstances, is a good sort and rescues the boy. She could take it to the orphanage, but that's much of a life for the kid, so she spends the next several years sacrificing for the boy she takes for her own. The rest of the story is often violent, sad and extremely, extremely sentimental.
The film is interesting because on one hand it's very old fashioned and a bit schmaltzy. But on the other, it's brutal in its realism and often pulls no punches. The overall effect is a film you can't help but admire and it's a wonderful portrait of someone who manages to both prostitute herself to stay alive yet somehow maintain her humanity. Well worth seeing.
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