Celebrated writer and director John Sayles uses America's occupation of the Philippines at the dawn of the 20th century as an analogy for several more recent political and military blunders in this period drama. It's 1900, and Rafael (Joel Torre) is the leader of a village in the Philippine countryside. Rafael is well respected by the locals for his sense of decency and fair play, and as the United States military takes control of the islands, Lt. Compton (Garret Dillahunt) is eager to work with him in an effort to win over the people. However, since Rafael and Compton don't share a common language, they must use Padre Hidalgo (Yul Vázquez), a local preacher who doesn't trust the American colonizers, as an interpreter, while Compton's commander, Col. Hardacre (Chris Cooper), is openly contemptuous of the Filipinos. Meanwhile, as Rafael tries to maintain a fragile peace for his people, his brother Simon (Ronnie Lazaro) has organized a band of rebels determined to protect their homeland and drive the Americans out, and Rafael finds his loyalties sorely tested. Amigo received its world premiere at the 2010 Toronto International Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

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