Strawberry & Chocolate (1993)

  • Year: 1993
  • Released: 20 Jan 1995
  • Country: Cuba, Mexico, Spain, United States
  • Adwords: Nominated for 1 Oscar. 25 wins & 2 nominations total
  • IMDb:
  • Rotten Tomatoes:
  • Metacritics:
  • Available in: 720p, 1080p,
  • Language: Spanish, English, French
  • MPA Rating: R
  • Genre: Comedy, Drama, Romance
  • Runtime: 108 min
  • Writer: Tomás Gutiérrez Alea, Senel Paz
  • Director: Tomás Gutiérrez Alea, Juan Carlos Tabío
  • Cast: Jorge Perugorría, Vladimir Cruz, Mirta Ibarra
  • Keywords: cuba, 1970s, artist, male friendship, male homosexuality, social commentary,

Strawberry & Chocolate Storyline

Diego, a cultivated, skeptical, homosexual young man, falls in love with a young heterosexual communist full of prejudices and doctrinal ideas. First come rejection and suspicion, but also fascination. Fresa y chocolate is a coming-of-age story told through the development of a great friendship which overcomes incomprehension and intolerance.

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Strawberry & Chocolate Movie Reviews

A Wonderful Movie

The comment from the viewer in Norway who had to be forced to watch this lovely film is in dire need of just more than learning to speak Spanish. This film is not about two gay men, as one character is gay, the other is straight. It is a movie about how two people who seem to be very different are really very similar. Both love their country and they learn that love of man (or of woman) and of country can be expressed differently and still be valued and respected. It is a wonderful, charming, endearing and thoroughly well acted movie. It is extremely realistic and gives and shows a snapshot of Cuba we are not able to see or partake of. I thoroughly enjoyed this movie. It is funny, well acted and well written and directed. The two male leads are superior as is the female character. I have seen this movie many times and never tire of it. I most highly recommend it. It is not a gay film, so don’t think of it that way or you will be very disappointed.

Fine film, but Miramax’s US version is cut


Aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Sound format: Ultra-Stereo

Used as an unwitting pawn by his pro-revolutionary colleagues, a naive student (Vladmir Cruz) is encouraged to develop a platonic relationship with a flamboyant gay artist (Jorge Perugorria), whose political allegiances have fallen under suspicion. But as their friendship deepens, Cruz is transformed by Perugorria’s resistance to the Cuban regime, even as the forces of oppression begin to close around them.

Based on a short story (‘El Lobo, el Bosque y el Hombre Nuevo’) by screenwriter Senel Paz, STRAWBERRY AND CHOCOLATE is a joyous celebration of life and non-conformity, distinguished by Perugorria’s vivid performance as a self-proclaimed ‘outsider’ who rejects his friend’s unquestioning loyalty to the Cuban political system that is stifling their beloved homeland. Their budding relationship is complicated by Perugorria’s unrequited love for Cruz, depicted here with dignity and compassion, though it’s their political differences which ultimately unite the two characters, even as Perugorria is forced to reap the whirlwind of his public defiance. Also starring Mirta Ibarra as Perugorria’s flaky neighbor, who introduces virginal Cruz to the joys of sexual liberation! It isn’t a terribly cinematic film, but production values are solid, and the characters are played with such integrity, it hardly matters; this is a movie in which ideas take precedence over action, and the emotional payoff is quite powerful indeed. Beautiful music score by Jose Maria Vitier, too. Directed by Tomás Gutiérrez Alea and Juan Carlos Tabío.

NB. The original US version (released by Miramax) is missing approximately six minutes of footage. Absent material includes a brief conversation about racism during Cruz’s first visit to Perugorria’s apartment, and a sad little sequence in which the two characters pretend not to notice each other after meeting by accident in a bookstore.

(Spanish dialogue)

straight and gay reach understanding

I agree with all the positive things already so well put forth by other reviewers and say that I liked this film a lot. Jorge Perugorria is incredible as the slightly “queenie” gay man. I have seen him in other films where is so different, as a very macho truck driver, for instance. Here he is the art and book lover and appreciator of good food and drink, as well as attractive young men. His “education” of the stern young Cuban Communist (an excellent Vladimir Cruz), a very straight man with intense emotional animosity toward gays, becomes a study in the resolution of human relationships triumphing over social and political obstacles.The comradely embrace of the two men , symbolizing their understanding and acceptance of each other despite superficial differences, was a masterstroke at the end of this fine film.