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Viva Zapata! (1952)

The story of Mexican revolutionary Emiliano Zapata, who led a rebellion against the corrupt, oppressive dictatorship of president Porfirio Diaz in the early 20th century.

Director:

Elia Kazan

Writer:

John Steinbeck
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Marlon Brando ... Emiliano Zapata
Jean Peters ... Josefa Zapata
Anthony Quinn ... Eufemio Zapata
Joseph Wiseman ... Fernando Aguirre
Arnold Moss ... Don Nacio
Alan Reed ... Pancho Villa
Margo ... Soldadera
Harold Gordon Harold Gordon ... Francisco Indalecio Madero
Lou Gilbert Lou Gilbert ... Pablo
Frank Silvera ... Victoriano Huerta
Florenz Ames ... Senor Espejo
Richard Garrick ... Old General
Fay Roope Fay Roope ... Diaz
Mildred Dunnock ... Senora Espejo
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Storyline

In 1909, Emiliano Zapata, a well-born but penniless Mexican Mestizo from the southern state of Morelos, comes to Mexico City to complain that their arable land has been enclosed, leaving them only in the barren hills. His expressed dissatisfaction with the response of the President Diaz puts him in danger, and when he rashly rescues a prisoner from the local militia he becomes an outlaw. Urged on by a strolling intellectual, Fernando, he supports the exiled Don Francisco Madero against Diaz, and becomes the leader of his forces in the South as Francisco 'Pancho' Villa is in the North. Diaz flees, and Madero takes his place; but he is a puppet president, in the hands of the leader of the army, Huerta, who has him assassinated when he tries to express solidarity for the men who fought for him. Zapata and Villa return to arms, and, successful in victory, seek to find a leader for the country. Unwillingly, Zapata takes the job, but, a while later, he responds to some petitioners from his ... Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A BANDIT WHO BECAME A LEGEND!...Roaring Story of Mexico's Tiger on a White Horse!


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

22 August 1952 (West Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Beloved Tiger See more »

Filming Locations:

San Ygnacio, Texas, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,800,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to Elia Kazan's autobiography "A Life" (1988), John Steinbeck would whittle while they sat in the wood shop of Steinbeck's New York townhouse writing the script. The two developed a deep and enduring friendship during the project. See more »

Goofs

Emiliano Zapata's 'dead body' is heavily breathing and changes positions between different shots. See more »

Quotes

Josefa: I don't speak for myself now, but if anything happens to you, what would become of the people? What would they have left?
Emiliano Zapata: Themselves.
Josefa: And all the fighting and the deaths... what has really changed?
Emiliano Zapata: They have really changed. That's how things really change - slowly - through people. They don't really need me anymore.
Josefa: They have to be led.
Emiliano Zapata: Yes, but by each other. A strong man makes a weal people. Strong people don't need a strong man.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: Mexico-1909

A delegation of Indians from the State of Morelos have come to the Capital for an audience with their President, Porfirio Diaz. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Zapata...Zapata !
9 June 2011 | by nandy-rinkiSee all my reviews

I wonder how one of the reviewers found Brando a miscast, Brando is brilliant in the movie. With his intense anger and hatred for the exploiters and supported by good looks his performance is quite impressive. Kazan is a genius with his direction, all the main actors are superb starting from Brando, Quinn and the bad guy. I can't imagine why 'they' gave the Oscar to Gray Cooper for High Noon when Brando's performance in Viva Zapata clearly outdid Gary's, I have seen both the movies and Brando deserves it without a second thought. Well, Brando didn't care and that's the best part, he certainly is the BEST in method acting and this movie shows just how talented and gifted as an actor he was.

The movie overall is a classic, poetic, rebellious and based on the life of the revolutionary Zapata in Mexico. There are a number a similarities with Che Guevara, war tactics and the way he lives and spares no one when it comes to his ideals. It's must watch for the lovers of classic, artistic cinema.


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