The Perez Family (1995) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Perez Family1995

The Perez Family (1995)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

The Perez Family Photos

Movie Info

Old and new loves are turned upside down through a complex case of mistaken identities in this romantic comedy-drama. In 1980, Juan Raul Perez (Alfred Molina) is released from a Cuban prison after spending 20 years behind bars and is allowed to join a mass emigration to the U.S. While Juan was incarcerated, his wife Carmela Perez (Anjelica Huston) escaped to Florida with their daughter, and Juan lives for the day when they can be reunited. En route to Miami, Juan meets Dottie Perez (Marisa Tomei), a fiery young woman who wants to leave behind her career as a prostitute. Juan and Carmela miss finding each other when his boat reaches Miami, and immigration personnel mistakenly assume that Juan and Dottie Perez are husband and wife; when they learn that families tend to find American sponsors much faster than individuals, they play along with the mistake, even convincing other Perezes to pose as their child and grandfather. Juan discovers that trying to renew an old relationship isn't easy as one tries to start a new life, especially since Carmela has attracted the attentions of police lieutenant John Pirelli (Chazz Palminteri). Cuban jazz legend Arturo Sandoval contributed to the soundtrack.

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Marisa Tomei
as Dottie Perez
Alfred Molina
as Juan Raul Perez
Anjelica Huston
as Carmela Perez
Chazz Palminteri
as Officer Pirelli
Trini Alvarado
as Teresa Perez
Celia Cruz
as Luz Pat
Diego Wallraff
as Angel Diaz
Jose Philipe Padron
as Felipe Perez
Ranjit Chowdhry
as Ranjit, Indian Immigration Official
Ellen Cleghorne
as Officer Rhoades
Lázaro Pérez
as Armando `Papi' Perez
Bill Sage
as Steve Steverino
Billy Hopkins
as Officer Aiden
Ruben Rabasa
as Father Martinez
Salvadore Levy
as Customer #2
Gustavo Laborie
as Cuban Official
Luis Torres
as Guajiro Drummer #1
Paloma Delaijrentil
as Transvestite on Boat
Oscar Gonzalez
as Old Guajiro
Florencio Santana
as Old Guajiro
Magaly Aguelo
as Angel's Secretary
Marc Macaulay
as Male Volunteer
Luis Raul
as News Photographer
Ángeles González Sinde
as Guajiro Drummer
Antoni Corone
as Security
Jorge Luis Ramone
as Cuban Prison Guard
Mira Nair
as Woman Buying Flowers
Ana Carballosa
as Woman of Many Faces
Salvador Levy
as Customer
José Felipe Padron
as Felipe Perez
Melissa Ramone
as Young Carmela
Mel Gorham
as Vilma/Raquel
Luis E. Torres Meneses
as Guajiro Drummer
Ángel González
as Guajiro Drummer
View All

Critic Reviews for The Perez Family

All Critics (18) | Top Critics (9)

The conclusion rushes by without sufficient development: You feel like there's a scene or two missing. But the movie ends with such optimism and bittersweet nostalgia, it sends you out smiling.

August 18, 2021 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

With non-Hispanic principal actors and Indian-born Mira Nair directing, this garish romance is a bit of an ethnic pot-pourri, but it's not quite as annoying as it sounds. Huston, in particular, gives it a touch of genuine class.

November 27, 2017 | Full Review…

Mira Nair's consistent exploration of the search for home is admirable, but her movie is burdened by an unconvincing ensemble that's unable to elevate the serio-comic exploration of Cuban immigrants into a poignant tale.

October 8, 2006 | Rating: C+
Top Critic

The movie sometimes bends the plausible to set up a laugh, and most of the time I didn't care, because I was enjoying the company of the characters.

January 1, 2000 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Mira Nair's Mississippi Masala found humor in ethnic chaos, and the Indian-born director does so again.

January 1, 2000 | Rating: 3/4
Top Critic

Sensuous and lush with a hint of Allende's magical realism in the bleeding of a man's broken heart and a string of rose petals trailing a line along the belly of a new lover.

March 14, 2002 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Perez Family


A ridiculous comedy, which seems to have a much worthy cast than this film gives it credit; Chaz Palminteri, Angelica Houston, Marissa Tomei and Vincent Gallo all of whom have appeared in much better quality films. The idea as a film is quite comical I guess, collecting family members to create a fiamily, but it was simply a film with a little bit of potential that went horribly wrong.

Lady D'arbanville
Lady D'arbanville

Super Reviewer


An all-time favorite!

Leo L
Leo L

Super Reviewer

The Perez Family Quotes

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