- Rated: PG-13
- Closed captioning available
- Run Time: 1 hours, 49 minutes
- Video: Color
- Released: April 6, 1999
- Originally Released: 1987
- Label: Sony Pictures
- Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
- Packaging: Keep Case
- Aspect Ratio: Letterbox - 1.85
- Aspect Ratio: Widescreen - 1.85
- Dolby Digital 2.0 - Spanish
- Dolby Digital 5.1 - English
- Additional Release Material:
- Featurette: "Remembering Richie"
- Trailers: Theatrical Trailer
- Music Video:
- Los Lobos - "La Bamba"
- Howard Huntsberry - "Lonely Teardrops"
- Luis Valdez - Director/Writer, Cast
- Taylor Hackford & Daniel Valdez - Producers
Performers, Cast and Crew:
New York Times - 07/24/1987
"...[Brings Valens's] music to life all over again....Philips has a sweetness and sincerity that in no way diminish[es] the toughness of his onstage persona..."
Variety - 05/20/1987
"...LA BAMBA is engrossing throughout and boasts numerous fine performances. In Lou Diamond Phillips' sympathetic turn, Valens comes across as a very fine young man..."
Sight and Sound - 06/01/2001
"...Engaging biopic of 50s rock 'n' roll star Ritchie Valens....His music is rousingly performed by Los Lobos..."
Rock 'n Roll biopic on the life of Ritchie Valens, a young Mexican/American whose talents as a rock and roll singer catapulted him from the obscurity of a farm laborer obsessed with music to stardom at the age of seventeen with a string of pop hits still popular today. Starring Lou Diamond Phillips as Ritchie and an excellent Esai Morales as his brother Bob, with whom he had a loving but tempestuous relationship.
A film biography of Mexican-American musician and singer Ritchie Valens, a one-time fruit picker who became a rock-and-roll legend.
The story covers his early career (when he scheduled gigs in between high school classes); his romance with blond, WASP-y Donna, the namesake of one of his pop hits; and the ill-fated national tour he played with Buddy Holly and the Big Bopper.
- Produced by R. Valenzuela Productions.
- Film premiered (and opened) the 12th Seattle International Film Festival in 1987, two months before its national release.
- Shot on location in San Jose and Hollister, California, for an estimated budget of $6.5 million.
- Copyright 1987 Columbia Pictures.