Rosa and Enrique make their way north, provided with only the name of a "coyote" (Rodolfo Alejandre) in Tijuana--a man who will take them across the border to America. Their journey is dangerous, at times terrifying; Rosa is almost eaten by rats as they crawl through the tiny sewer that is their only pathway to California.
But they do arrive, and the third part of this epic movie begins. In Los Angeles, life begins anew. Enrique gets work as a busboy and Rosa as a maid. They adapt surprisingly well to their new surroundings, and it's heartwarming to see them succeed. Throughout, they remain true to each other and their original family values.
"El Norte" is provocative and original. If it is in some respects overdone, that should not strangle the boxoffice. This has a shot at stepping beyond traditional art-houses and reaching into more commercial circuits.