"We're so aligned," the actor says of his actress wife Talisa Soto
Credit: Michael Kovac/FilmMagic

Benjamin Bratt and Talisa Soto will be celebrating their bronze anniversary on April 13 – but the couple has a connection that’s golden.

“We’re going on our eighth year of our marriage,” the former Law and Order star told PEOPLE at the New York premiere of La Mission, “and it feels like six months because we’re so aligned.”

The couple, who were cast as lovers in 2001’s Pinero, have another shared passion: Parenting. They love staying at home with their two children, Sophia Rosalinda, 7, and Mateo Bravery, 4.

“Honestly, they’re at this incredible stage where what comes out of their mouths is such a joy,” Soto, 43, said. “I can sit down and have conversations with them. “[I love] to see their perspective on things – just to be with them and see what they have to say about the world, what they see.”

Having children also has made the couple more discerning about their projects. “[Parenting] informs the work, enriches it,” Bratt, 46, said. “The stakes are much higher on every level. The work that you choose will draw you away from that which you care for most, your family, [and] gets a whole new scrutiny.”

La Mission passed the test. The couple co-star in the film, which centers on a transitional San Francisco neighborhood – in fact, the same one where Bratt grew up – and was directed by his brother, Peter Bratt.

So, filming was a family affair. “Our two young kids came down,” Bratt said. “And [Peter’s] son and wife would come down. My mother. All of our relations are still there, either in the [La Mission] neighborhood or in the surrounding neighborhoods.”

But Soto was warned beforehand about Bratt’s brotherly closeness. “I said when we met, ‘You marry me, and you half way have to marry my brother,'” Bratt joked.