A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Leading characters exhibit self-destructive behavior and are hurtful to others; women are treated as sexual objects and abused verbally; drug use shown to destroy relationships, careers, and family.
Violence & Scariness
Intense domestic verbal fighting with threat of violence; firearm used for purpose of intimidation.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Adulterous behavior, sexual foreplay, and off-camera intercourse; seductive dancing; two adults in a provocative bathtub scene; no actual nudity.
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Continuous use of cursing; "f---k" in all forms is used in almost every scene.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Both leading characters are drug addicts and are pictured high and/or incapacitated throughout; drugs are clearly ingested and injected in numerous scenes, and use is implied in others; frequent alcohol consumption leads to anti-social and cruel behavior.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that even though J Lo is popular with younger teens, this isn't a movie for that age group. The characters abuse alcohol, engage in excessive drug use, curse frequently, and generally display self-degrading, suicidal behavior. Many scenes depict explicit drug use and sexual activity, mostly motivated by the mind-altering substances. Though the audience soon understands that there's little hope for Hector Lavoe and his family, the characters themselves seem unable to change their conduct, even at the risk of their own lives and the lives of loved ones. It's a non-stop downward spiral without a happy ending. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
EL CANTANTE brings the magic of salsa music to the screen; unfortunately, it also brings the audience another bleak story of a flameout singer bent on self-destruction. Director Leon Ichaso, faced with the difficult task of taking a story that's been told many times, partially succeeds in making the material special. The colorful music and dancing are wonderful; the movie transitions through time and place with grace and coherence. What's missing is motivation and an understanding of what made these charismatic and talented people self-destruct.
Hector was such a sweet young man; Puchi seemed innocent in spite of a young sophistication. Both Anthony and Lopez fully commit to their roles. He's terrific, and this is the most authentic that Lopez has ever been. As the framing structure for the movie, Ichaso uses an interview with Puchi conducted long after her husband's death. But it simply isn't enough to help the audience understand Lavoe's self-imposed downfall.
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Our Editors Recommend
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