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Chile, Spain, United Kingdom · 2004
2h 1m
Director Andrés Wood
Starring Matías Quer, Ariel Mateluna, Aline Küppenheim, Ernesto Malbran
Genre Drama

Set during Salvador Allende's controversial presidency, slum-raised Pedro Machuca gets a full-ride scholarship to an elite Catholic boarding school run by progressive Father McEnroe. With budding friendships, political drama, and social tension, a portrait of youth life during the political upheavals of 1970s Chile is revealed.

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What are critics saying?


New York Post by

You don't have to know Chile's bloody history to be moved by the poignant new film Machuca, the first movie made by a Chilean about the country's 1973 military coup.


Salon by Andrew O'Hehir

Wood's film works, first and foremost, as a powerful character drama; it's not trying to teach historical or ideological lessons.


The A.V. Club by Keith Phipps

Though Machuca ultimately doesn't shy away from taking sides, it wisely keeps the focus on the human element. The politics take place in the background until they demand the foreground.


TV Guide Magazine by Ken Fox

Wood's drama packs an emotional gut-punch that's all the more devastating for its being rooted in a dreadful historical reality.


Village Voice by Michael Atkinson

Machuca is still a half-measure. Wood is fastidious about period set design, but not much else; rather than burning with experience, the film feels opportunistic.

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