The Best Edward James Olmos Movies

Over 100 Ranker voters have come together to rank this list of The Best Edward James Olmos Movies
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List of the best Edward James Olmos movies, ranked best to worst with movie trailers when available. Edward James Olmos's highest grossing movies have received a lot of accolades over the years, earning millions upon millions around the world. The order of these top Edward James Olmos movies is decided by how many votes they receive, so only highly rated Edward James Olmos movies will be at the top of the list. Edward James Olmos has been in a lot of films, so people often debate each other over what the greatest Edward James Olmos movie of all time is. If you and a friend are arguing about this then use this list of the most entertaining Edward James Olmos films to end the squabble once and for all.

If you think the best Edward James Olmos role isn't at the top, then upvote it so it has the chance to become number one. The greatest Edward James Olmos performances didn't necessarily come from the best movies, but in most cases they go hand in hand.

Examples of films on this list include Evening in Byzantium and Aloha, Bobby and Rose.

"This list answers the questions, "What are the best Edward James Olmos movies?" and "What are the greatest Edward James Olmos roles of all time?"

Edward James Olmos is no stranger to working with popular directors, including Ridley Scott, Raja Gosnell and Robert Rodriguez.

Most divisive: Alambrista!
Ranked by
  • American Me
    1
    Edward James Olmos, William Forsythe, Pepe Serna
    30 votes
    • Released: 1992
    • Directed by: Edward James Olmos
    As a young man, Montoya Santana (Edward James Olmos) is introduced to gang life on the tough streets of Los Angeles after spending his youth in reform school. Soon Santana finds himself facing an 18-year prison sentence. In jail, he works his way to the top of the institution's violent drug trade, but, on his release from prison, he opts for a redemptive, family-centered lifestyle. However, his gangster friends (Pepe Serna, William Forsythe) try to force him back into illegal activities.

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  • Stand and Deliver
    2
    Edward James Olmos, Lou Diamond Phillips, Rosanna DeSoto
    41 votes
    • Released: 1988
    • Directed by: Ramón Menéndez
    Los Angeles high school teacher Jaime Escalante (Edward James Olmos) is being hassled by tough students like Angel Guzman (Lou Diamond Phillips). But Jaime is also pressured by his bosses, who want him to control his raucous classroom. Caught in the middle, he opts to immerse his students in higher math. After intensive study, his students ace California's calculus test, only to learn that their scores are being questioned. They'll have to retake the exam in order to quiet the critics.

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  • Selena
    3
    Jennifer Lopez, Edward James Olmos, Jon Seda
    33 votes
    • Released: 1997
    • Directed by: Gregory Nava
    In this biographical drama, Selena Quintanilla (Jennifer Lopez) is born into a musical Mexican-American family in Texas. Her father, Abraham (Edward James Olmos), realizes that his young daughter is talented and begins performing with her at small venues. She finds success and falls for her guitarist, Chris Perez (Jon Seda), who draws the ire of her father. Seeking mainstream stardom, Selena begins recording an English-language album which, tragically, she would never complete.

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  • My Family
    4
    Jimmy Smits, Esai Morales, Eduardo López Rojas
    20 votes
    • Released: 1995
    • Directed by: Gregory Nava
    A second-generation Mexican immigrant narrates his family history, beginning with the journey of his father, Jose (Jacob Vargas), across Mexico to Los Angeles where he meets Maria (Jennifer Lopez) and starts a family. Each subsequent generation contends with political and social hardships, ranging from illegal deportations in the 1940s to racial tensions and gang fights in the '60s and '70s. Yet through it all, or perhaps because of it, the family remains strong.

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  • Zoot Suit
    5
    Daniel Valdez, Edward James Olmos, Tyne Daly
    14 votes
    • Released: 1981
    • Directed by: Luis Valdez
    Mexican-American gangster Henry Reyna (Daniel Valdez) and others in his group are accused of a murder in which they had no part. They are then rounded up by the police because of their race and their choice of clothing. The gang members are thrown into prison and put through a racist trial. As Henry considers his fate, he has a conversation with El Pachuco (Edward James Olmos), a figure from his own conscience who makes him contemplate a choice between his heritage and his home country.

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  • The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez
    6
    12 votes
    • Released: 1982
    • Directed by: Robert M. Young
    The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez is a 1982 tv film directed by Robert M. Young.