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The First Night (La Primera Noche)
The First Night
La Primera Noche
Actors: Carolina Lizarazo, John Álex Toro, Hernán Méndez, Enrique Carriazo, Alfonso Ortiz
Director: Luis Alberto Restrepo
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama
UR     2007     1hr 30min

During the present civil war, two brothers are torn apart fighting on opposite sides in the Colombian jungle. One is a military recruit, the other a guerrilla. The woman they share is forced to abandon the uncertainty of l...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Carolina Lizarazo, John Álex Toro, Hernán Méndez, Enrique Carriazo, Alfonso Ortiz
Director: Luis Alberto Restrepo
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Family Life
Studio: TLA
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Closed-captioned,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 01/30/2007
Original Release Date: 01/01/2003
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2003
Release Year: 2007
Run Time: 1hr 30min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 1
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Languages: Spanish
Subtitles: English

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Movie Reviews

A Family Divided By Colombia's Ongoing Civil War
Chris Luallen | Nashville, Tennessee | 03/26/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Wilson (Julian Roman) and Tono (John Alex Toro) are two brothers growing up the remote mountains of rural Colombia. Tono falls in love with a local girl named Pauline (Carolina Lizarazo). But she instead marries and has two children with Wilson. Neither brother has much economic opportunity in their small town. So Wilson leaves to join up with a guerilla group that his uncle belongs to, while Tono joins the army hoping to eventually gain the opportunity to further his education. Meanwhile, Pauline is left to raise the two infant sons with her mother-in-law. One night a guerilla group attacks the town. But Tono military's commander refuses to allow the army unit to try to rescue the townspeople. Tono runs off from his unit only to find his mother already murdered. He then stabs his commanding officer in revenge and deserts the army. This is actually only the "flashback" portion of the movie. The rest of the film involves Tono tagging along, out of desperation, to the big city of Bogota with Paulina and the kids. Ultimately, they find themselves living on the street and from there the tragedy only deepens.

This movie paints a very bleak portrait of a family ripped apart by the ravages of a civil war that has tormented their country for decades, with no end in sight. The civil war started as a political struggle between leftist revolutionaries and the government. But now it is really more about the narco-trafficking business and who controls the huge profits involved in the exportation of drugs like cocaine and heroin. My wife is originally from Ecuador and her best friend, Carmen, is from Colombia. So every couple of years I go with her to Colombia to visit with Carmen and her incredibly warm and hospitable family. I've been there three times so far. Colombia is a beautiful country with many wonderful people. It's a tragedy that it continues to be plagued by this greed and hate fueled civil war. This movie presents the harsh realities of life for many poor Colombians caught in the war zone. Hopefully a better future will one day be realized."