Zapata: El sueño de un héroe

Zapata: El sueño del héroe

Poster of zapata: El sueño del héroe
Directed by Alfonso Arau
Produced by Pliny Porter
Alfonso Arau
Written by Alfonso Arau
Starring Alejandro Fernández
Patricia Velásquez
Music by Ruy Folguera
Cinematography Vittorio Storaro
Edited by Carlos Puente
Release dates
Country Mexico
Language Spanish / Nahuatl

Zapata: El sueño del héroe (in English: Zapata: The dream of a hero), also titled simply Zapata, is a Mexican motion picture first released in 2004.

This fictionalized portrayal of Emiliano Zapata, played by Alejandro Fernández, as an Indigenous Mexican shaman, directed by Alfonso Arau, was reportedly the most expensive Mexican movie ever produced, with a massive ad campaign, and the largest ever opening in the nation's history. Unusual in the Mexican film industry, Zapata was financed independently.

Zapata made its U.S. debut at the Santa Fe Film Festival on December 3, 2004 at the Center for Contemporary Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico.


The film happens in the last quarter of the 19th century and the first nineteen years of the twentieth, during the dictatorship of Porfirio Díaz (Justo Martínez), the presidency of Francisco I. Madero, the military revolt of Victoriano Huerta (Jesús Ochoa), the Convention of Generals and, finally, the death of Zapata (Alejandro Fernández), already in the constitutionalist stage of Venustiano Carranza. The film does not try to be a chair of history but a fable that obtains the identification of the spectators with the hero, through the successive confrontation of the protagonist with the power, represented in the antagonistic figure of Victoriano Huerta. In it, Emiliano Zapata appears like predestining, "the signal" in his chest, the mark or spot with the form of a little hand is the sign that identifies him as "the one" by the Huehuetlatolli (the heirs of the tradition) to be their guide. Thus, we see the birth of Emiliano, where he is recognized like the possible leader of his town. Zapata will have to break with his vision of the "real reality" and to enter in that other magical knowledge of the Mexican tradition and its inscrutable religious "sincretismo".

Cast (in credits order)

  • Rafael Cortés as Arturo
  • Alejandro Calva as Gilgerdo Magaña
  • Omar Sánchez as Otilio Montaña
  • Javier Escobar as Joaquin
  • Eduardo Ocaña as Pablo
  • Isi Rojano as Sobrina
  • Marcial Alejandro as Trovador
  • Francisco Badillo as Zapatista 1
  • Raymundo Ibarra as Zapatista 2
  • Mayolival Del Monte as Mujer Zapatista
  • Luis Enrique Parra as Francisco Villa
  • Sharmel Altamirano
  • Alejandra Palacios
  • Jaime Estrada as Gabriel Zapata
  • Angélica Lara as Madre de Zapata
  • Rafael Velasco as Don Lázaro
  • César Valdéz as Sargento
  • Julian Sedgwick as USA Ambassador
  • Paulino Hemmer as Secretario de Huerta

  • Gerardo Pérez
  • Alejandro Fernández as Emiliano Zapata
  • Omar Espino as Eufemio Niño
  • Paola Ayala as Josefa Niña
  • José Antonio Gutiérrez as Mensajero Federal
  • Eleno Guzmán as Soldado
  • Evangelina Martínez as Vieja
  • José María Negri as Sacerdote
  • Godofredo Villegas as Maestro de Ceremonias
  • Brenda Angulo as Prostituta
  • Carla Hernández as Prostituta
  • Tony Helling as Prostituta
  • Liliana Lago as Prostituta
  • Juana Ponce as Prostituta
  • Maria Guadalupe Hernández as Prostituta
  • Gabriela Tavela as Ama de llaves
  • Alfonso Garza as Marido celoso
  • Nayeli Márquez as Esposa Infiel
  • Luis Rubiera as Asistante de Gonzalez
  • Eduardo Francisco Galeano as Asistante de Gonzalez


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