To John Grady it's self-evident that he should be with his lover Alejandra.
In a perfect world the coupling of two young lovers would not be opposed for any reason. For Alejandra—and especially her family—the social costs of a relationship with John Grady are simply too great for his love to overcome.
Just in terms of the story, when you are bold enough to buck expectations in plot turns, we cannot take ourselves anywhere so we trust that the filmmaker has a purpose, a specific place for us to go.
That place could be the ordinary story of the resources an ordinary man marshalls when faced with a world actively conspired against him.
Heavy breathing isn't acting, as Billy Bob knows, and her part is the only conventional element in an otherwise alternative plot.
Sam Shepard, Bruce Dern, Ruben Blades, and Miriam Colon put in supersolid performances, each in small monologues.What is the story Alejandra's godmother tells John Grady? What is the argument John Grady and Rawlins have after they are arrested?How does this impact the two of them and their relationship?This is what would have been used at the time the story is set.See more » A lovely, meandering story with some terrific acting -- unfortunately not from the two leads -- which takes us nowhere.See more » In the opening credits, the Columbia Pictures emblem is not the 2000 one.Instead, it is the circa 1949 version with the woman holding the torch.John Grady Cole is introduced as a young man with big dreams.He doesn't need much out of life, but he believes he's entitled to a life of beautiful horses and a beautiful woman as a wife.He rails against the state of affairs, but as Dueña Alfonsa explains to him, with the wisdom of someone who has lived through many terrible events, eventually everyone comes to see the light.This tension is also personified by the behavior of the captain.