In 1980, Arenas finally leaves Cuba for the US, starting a new life with his close friend Lazaro Gomez Carriles. A few years later, Arenas is diagnosed with AIDS, and after spending several years suffering he dies in 1990 with the help of Lazaro.

The story of John Wilmot, a.k.a. the Earl of Rochester, a 17th century poet who famously drank and debauched his way to an early grave, only to earn posthumous critical acclaim for his life's work.

In uniting to honor Arenas, Bardem and Schnabel create something extraordinary. Full review...

A young refugee traveling from Russia to America in search of her lost father falls for a gypsy horseman.

In uniting to honor Arenas, Bardem and Schnabel create something extraordinary.

An Innuit hunter races his sled home with a fresh-caught halibut. This fish pervades the entire film, in real and imaginary form. Meanwhile, Axel tags fish in New York as a naturalist's ... See full summary »

This is the story of Uxbal, a man living in this world, but able to see his death, which guides his every move.

Bardem spent one-and-a-half months in New York City with Arenas's best friend, Lazaro Gomez Carriles, taking two hours a day to study how Arenas walked and talked.[4]

The film had its world premiere at the 2000 Venice International Film Festival and its North American premiere at the 2000 Toronto Film Festival.[2]

Episodic look at the life of Cuban poet and novelist, Reinaldo Arenas (1943-1990), from his childhood in Oriente province to his death in New York City. He joins Castro's rebels. By 1964, ...

An unimpressive, every-day man is forced into a situation where he is told to kill a politician to save his kidnapped daughter.

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A psychiatrist must cure a young patient that presents himself as Don Juan, the greatest lover in the world.

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An impressionistic, fragmented look at Reinaldo Arenas, Before Night Falls' imagery manages to evoke a sense of the writer's artistry, and Bardem's strong performance holds the film together. Finally, a biopic done well. Full review...

The factual story of Spaniard Ramon Sampedro, who fought a thirty-year campaign in favor of euthanasia and his own right to die.

Though Schnabel's first picture, Basquiat, was notable for its excess and self-indulgence, the filmmaker shows restraint and maturity in this moving depiction of Arenas's life and loves.

It's a struggle not just to make art but to exist, which is itself an art. And to that goal, the cast members, led by the astonishing Bardem, allow themselves to be devoured by the roles they are playing.

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Saddled with a wandering opening and an equally listless conclusion, a more fitting name for this two hour-plus biopic might well be Before Night Falters.

Julian Schnabel got the idea of making Before Night Falls immediately after making Basquiat, however it took four years to actually produce the film.[3]

After an explosion in space and subsequent two-minute radio-out period, two astronauts return home to their wives. Slightly it's revealed that they're not the same as they were.

One of the first features about Castro's impact on artists and homosexuals, this biopic is well acted by Bardem

"Before Night Falls" exuberantly portrays a writer whose legacy remains an acutely observant childhood spirit that no perversion of politics could break. Javier Bardem blends the swagger of Robert Downey Jr. and the brooding of a young Al Pacino.

despite a real commitment to Arenas and his work, the film just falls short.

Jacob Asch is hired by Gerald McMurty to find his ex-wife Laine and their son in Palm Springs. Jacob finds Laine and a teenager named Donnie who may or may not be Gerald's son. He also ... See full summary »

Schabel's most recent work fails to move me. While the story of Reinaldo Arenas is tragic enough to be interesting (and Javier Bardem's performance sympathetic) the film as a whole simply seems long and indulgent.

A prosaically inspirational and passionate work, a celebration of the artistic impulse as a surging force of nature.

Before Night Falls (2000)

This could have been a compelling movie about a wonderful writer, but instead it's a tedious, pointless mess. After spending over 2 hours with Arenas, I still knew nothing about him. Javier Bardem's great performance seemed to be a complete waste.

Academy Award-winner Javier Bardem stars as the Cuban poet and novelist, Reynaldo Arenas, who was persecuted for his creative beliefs and his homosexuality before finally being allowed to leave Cuba in 1980 .

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Bardem hasn't the charisma to bring variety to Arenas or his plight.

Movies and TV shows are Certified Fresh with a steady Tomatometer of 75% or higher after a set amount of reviews (80 for wide-release movies, 40 for limited-release movies, 20 for TV shows), including 5 reviews from Top Critics.

Schnabel has fashioned a dense, emotionally satisfying portrait of a man, a time and a place.

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The political climate in Cuba becomes increasingly dangerous, and in the early seventies Arenas is arrested for allegedly sexually assaulting minors, and for publishing abroad without official consent. In the next decade, Arenas is in and out of prison, attempting and failing to leave the country several times.

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Is the love compatible with coupledom? And what of freedom and fidelity? These are some of the questions facing two married men.

A down-on-his-luck American Indian recently released from jail is offered the chance to "star" as the victim of a snuff film, the resulting pay of which could greatly help his poverty stricken family.

One of the first features about Castro's impact on artists and homosexuals, this biopic is well acted by Bardem Full review...