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3.0 3
Director: Oliver Stone

Cast: James Woods, Jim Belushi, Michael Murphy


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While Salvador wasn't Oliver Stone's first film (a pair of offbeat horror stories preceded it), it defined his style of fiercely dramatic, politically oriented filmmaking, staked out his territory as one of the major directors of the 1980s and 1990s, and remains one of his strongest works to date. Veteran photojournalist Richard Boyle (James


While Salvador wasn't Oliver Stone's first film (a pair of offbeat horror stories preceded it), it defined his style of fiercely dramatic, politically oriented filmmaking, staked out his territory as one of the major directors of the 1980s and 1990s, and remains one of his strongest works to date. Veteran photojournalist Richard Boyle (James Woods) has been taking his camera to the world's trouble spots for over 20 years; while he does good work, Boyle's fondness for booze and drugs, and his colossal arrogance, have given him a reputation that's left him practically unemployable. Broke and with no immediate prospects, Boyle and his buddy Doctor Rock (Jim Belushi), an out-of-work disc jockey, head to El Salvador, where Boyle is convinced that he can scare up some lucrative freelance work amidst the nation's political turmoil. However, when Boyle and Rock witness the execution of a student by government troops just as they enter the country, it becomes clear that this war is more serious than they were expecting. Increasingly convinced that El Salvador is a disaster starting to happen, Boyle eventually decides that it's time to get out; but he has fallen in love with a woman named Maria (Elpidia Carrillo), and he doesn't want to leave her behind. James Woods gives one of his best performances as Boyle; and the passion of Stone's message, aided by the power of its truth (the film is based on actual events), propels the film forward.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
Salvador may be Oliver Stone's best film, even if it is one of his least known and commercially disappointing. Released in the same year as Stone's more acclaimed Platoon, Salvador takes a rare, politically volatile subject: the U.S.-backed war in El Salvador and gives audiences a thrill-a-minute ride through the eyes of its unlikely protagonist, photographer Richard Boyle (James Woods). The reliable Woods is terrific, given room to roam by Stone in a complex and unforgiving role, and James Belushi as his friend is a dramatic surprise. The film is compelling both as a semi-autobiographical account of a risk-taking, globe-trotting photojournalist (Stone wrote the screenplay with Boyle) and as a mesmerizing political horror story. It's comparable in some ways toMissing, as one of a few mainstream American films to examine the United States's Latin American foreign policy and its impact on peoples' lives. Salvador marked Stone as a political maverick with a dazzling directorial style, as kinetic and frenetic as it would be in his later work. Michael Betzold

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Mgm (Video & Dvd)

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
James Woods Richard Boyle
Jim Belushi Dr. Rock
Michael Murphy Ambassador Thomas Kelly
John Savage John Cassady
Elpidia Carrillo Maria
Cynthia Gibb Cathy Moore
Colby Chester Jack Morgan
Tony Plana Maj. Max
Will MacMillian Col. Hyde
Valerie Wildman Pauline Axelrod
José Carlos Ruiz Archbishop Romero
Jorge Luke Col. Julio Figueroa
Juan Fernandez Army Lieutenant
Mario Arevalo Road Block Thug
Agustin Bernal Bodyguard to Major Max
Arturo Bonilla Romero Assassin
Erika Carlson Sister Wagner
Queta Carrasco Bruja
Jule Conn WAC at Party
Waldeir de Souza U.S. Customs Official
Arturo Rodriguez Doring Young Student Killed
Miguel Ehrenberg Capt. Marti
Humberto Elizondo Actor
Gary Farr Australian Reporter
Martin Fuentes Maria's Brother
Josh Gallegos Immigration Officer on Bus
Sigridur Gudmunds Sister Burkit
Claudia Hernandez Maria's Daughter
Bill Hoag 2nd Immigration Officer
Nicholas Jasso Death Squad
Tyrone Jones Landlord San Francisco
Tomas Leal Actor
Israel Leon Carlos' Friend
John MacDevitt GI in Salvador
Mauricio Martinez Executed Lieutenant
Ann Sue McKean Cop in San Francisco
Ramon Menendez Maj. Max's Assistant
Gilles Milinaire French Reporter
Bob Morones Customs Officer
Daria Okugawa Dog Attendant
Rene Pereyra Rapist
Jorge Pol Actor
Gerardo Quiroz Actor
Jorge Reynoso Jefe at Customs Shed
Xochitl Rosario Del Messenger on Horse
Maria Rubell Boyle's Baby
Bruno Rubeo Actor
Yair Rubin De Maria's Son
Salvador Sanchez Human Rights Leader
Cesar Sobrevals Actor
Roberto Sosa Rebel Youth
Sean Stone Boyle's Baby
Hector Tellez Mayor at Nun's Burial
Jose Chavez Trowe Jail Guard
Juliana Urquisa Wilma
Leticia Valenzuela Woman Rebel
Angel Vargas Tic Tac Monster in Cafe
Rosario Zuniga His Assistant
Carmen Del Ma. Sanchez Maria's Grandmother
Angeles Los De Ma. Urquiza Mamma Moncha at Panama Club
Kara Glover Kelly
Danna Hansen Sister Stan
John Doe Roberto, Restaurant Owner

Technical Credits
Oliver Stone Director,Producer,Screenwriter
John Daly Producer
Yves de Bono Special Effects
Georges Delerue Score Composer
Derek Gibson Producer
Gerald Green Producer
Melo Hinojosa Art Director
Ramon Menendez Asst. Director
Kathryn Morrison Costumes/Costume Designer
Richard Boyle Screenwriter
Robert Richardson Cinematographer
Bruno Rubeo Production Designer
Claire Simpson Editor


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Salvador 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Gonzo84 More than 1 year ago
I didn't know what to expect from this film, I bought the DVD mostly on a whim that it could either be a great film or a disaster, but in the end I was extremely satisfied. All I knew about the feature was that it was supposed to be an intense thriller with James Woods which portrays one of his finest perfomances on-screen to date. The Film follows Woods who plays a real life photo-journalist; Richard Boyle whom travels down to Salvador to escape a streak of bad luck in the States. Boyle travels down with a good friend Dr. Rock played by Jim Belushi. To myself, whom is a major fan of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, the film has a sort of touch like the novel and movie. Two guys traveling, getting stoned, drunk, and twisted, in a red convertible, with his sidekick named "DR," which sort of relates to "Dr. Gonzo" in the "Fear and Loathing" entreprise, and also the main character being a Journalist speaks some volumes. Maybe it's Oliver Stone's way of saluting the great and almighty Hunter S. Thompson...mmm...but the story is of course very different and takes extraordinary turns into the hell of human nature. Being an Oliver Stone flick, there's always a touch of shady American Politics, but this film is from the book which Boyle wrote himself about his true experiences in El Salvador. I can see why Stone and Woods got some Oscar nods for this feature, since nubmer one being the acting and number two it's just an all around great piece of art that explores American Influence on foreign policies along with Government Control over a sovergned state. Stone is at the top of his game with this masterpiece. I would say that it's up there with the likes of Platoon and even Natural Born Killers. So if you want to go on a wild bumpy ride, check this one out...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago