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The Double Life
of Ernesto Gomez Gomez

Gary Weinberg
screening schedule


His "double life" begins as an infant. His name is Guillermo Morales, a Puerto Rican born in the United States. He will soon to become Ernesto Gomez Gomez, eldest brother in a Mexican family. At the age of ten, Ernesto learns the truth of his existence- that he is the son of Puerto Rican revolutionaries. His father has found refuge in Cuba while his mother has been sentenced to a U.S. prison for 55 years.

The complex journey of the teenaged Ernesto/Guillermo takes him from his home in Chihuahua to the Federal prison near San Francisco, where he meets his birth mother for the first time. Still grieving over their separation, she is overjoyed to see her lost son. Reclaiming his birth name, Guillermo enrolls in a local high school to be near his mother. During weekly visits, mother and son try to recover some part of the relationship they never had.

Motivated by his mother's situation and her fierce commitment to her political convictions, Guillermo involves himself in the movement to free Puerto Rican Independistas from U.S. jails. He also applies for and receives American citizenship in effort to fully realize his identity.

The double life of Ernesto Gomez Gomez is a striking self-portrait of the costs of profound political idealism in one family. It confronts the issues of adoption, immigration, colonialism, and love merged into a single mesmerizing teen odyssey. The film combines interviews and archival footage with more expressionistic sequences in which Ernesto/Guillermo tries to communicate the feeling of being catapulted from one reality to another.


Catherine Ryan is an independent producer and director of documentary films for television. She obtained her M.A. from UC San Diego in Sociology where she met her filmmaking partner and husband, Gary Weimberg. Ryan began working in films in 1980 in San Francisco. She received technical education with Lucas film and worked on films such as "Return of the Jedi." Ryan also worked at Zoetrope studios as and assistant editor and later as a sound editor.

Contact information:

Rebecca Levy, Associate Producer
Luna Productions
3411 Irving St. San Francisco, CA 94122
Phone: 415-661-4666
Fax: 415-661-4555

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