In the Time of the Butterflies  (2001) from Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)

Butterflies is a Showtime movie about the Mirabal sisters, known to their colleagues as las mariposas (the butterflies), who are considered martyrs in the cause to overthrow Trujillo, the brutal dictator who ruled the Dominican Republic with an iron fist for decades. Their murder was considered the last straw in Trujillo's human rights abuses.

Their story was told in a Julia Alvarez novel, which Salma Hayek produced into this film.


Salma Hayek breast-feeds a baby. We see most of her large breast, but the nipple appears to stay in the baby's mouth.

DVD info from Amazon.

  • full screen only

  • no features

Except for a competent performance by Salma Hayek herself, this isn't a lot more than a docudrama, or maybe I should say a documelodrama. It's a sincere, but excessively bland and toothless treatment the last decade of the Trujillo regime as seen through the eyes of one woman who struggled to become the D.R.'s first law student.

Edward Olmos plays Trujillo in the exact same flat, emotionless, style he brought to Miami Vice, and actually seems like kind of a decent, reasonable guy! Springtime for Trujillo. The film plays out like a TV show, including obvious breaks where commercials can be inserted. Yawn.

The Critics Vote

  • no major reviews

  • nominated for three ALMA (Latin Filmmaking) awards, won two

The People Vote ...

  • IMDB summary. Voting results: IMDb voters score it 5.6/10
The meaning of the IMDb score: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence equivalent to about three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, comparable to approximately two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, equivalent to about a two star rating from the critics. Films rated below five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film - this score is roughly equivalent to one and a half stars from the critics or even less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

My own guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. (C+ means it has no crossover appeal, but will be considered excellent by genre fans, while C- indicates that it we found it to be a poor movie although genre addicts find it watchable). D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well.

Based on this description, C-. Nothing really wrong with it. Watch it if you are interested in the subject matter. Skip it if not.

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