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Salem State University | Department of World Languages & Cultures | Language Resource Center

Spanish Language Films and Documentaries

Films and documentaries kept at the LRC are for viewing at the LRC exclusively. They may not normally be checked out. VHS tapes may be viewed in the two TV-VHS combo machines at the lab (ask the lab attendant for a set of headphones). DVD's may be viewed at any of the computers.

Spanish-language feature films

Spanish Affair - Ocho apellidos vascos (2014)

Year: 2014 - Country: Spain - Language: Spanish (English subtitles) - Director: Emilio Martinez Lazaro - Genre: Comedy - Runtime: 99 - Actors: Karra Elejalde, Aitor Mazo, Clara Lago, Dani Rovira, Carmen Machi - Rating: NR - Format: DVD - Acquired: Sep 2015

"Rafael, a Seville citizen who has never left the Spanish region of Andalucia, decides to leave his homeland to follow Amaia, a Basque girl unlike other women he has known. SCREENED/AWARDED AT: Goya Awards."

The Milk of Sorrow (La Teta Asustada)

Year: 2010 - Country: Peru - Language: Spanish (English subtitles) - Director: Claudia Llosa - Genre: - Runtime: 94 - Actors: Magaly Solier, Susi Sanchez, Efrain Solis - Rating: NR - Format: DVD - Acquired: Sep 2015

"Fausta (Magaly Solier) suffers from The Milk of Sorrow, an illness transmitted through mother's milk by women who've been raped during Peru's Civil Wars. Stricken with the fear that she's contracted the illness from her mother's breast milk -- Fausta goes to extreme lengths to protect her own sexuality and safety. After her mother's sudden death, she finds herself compelled to embark on a frightening journey for re-awakening, freedom and wholeness. The Hollywood Reporter wrote, Gorgeously shot with a plethora of haunting images . Claudia Llosa directs this Academy Award Nominee for Best Foreign Film. Winner of the Golden Berlin Bear Award (Best Film) and the FIPRESCI Prize at the 59th Annual Berlin Film Festival."


Year: 2007 - Country: Chile - Language: Spanish (English subtitles) - Director: Andres Wood - Genre: - Runtime: 115 - Actors: Matias Quer, Ariel Mateluna - Rating: NR - Format: DVD - Acquired: Sep 2015

"Set in Chile, 1973, this is an astonishingly intimate and painful coming-of-age story about a pair of 12-year-old boys from opposite extremes of society who form an unlikely friendship during the last days of President Allende and the first days of Pinochet. The potent events are accompanied by a searingly beautiful soundtrack with heart-stopping beats that propel the drama of the story."

Arráncame la vida (Tear This Heart Out)

Year: 2008 - Country: Mexico - Language: Spanish (English subtitles) - Director: Roberto Sneider - Genre: Drama - Runtime: 107 min. - Actors: Ana Claudia Talancón, Daniel Giménez Cacho - Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Sep 2015

"Set in 1920's rural France, a young woman finds herself in an arranged marriage to a dull but well meaning man. Bored of him she takes drastic measures to change her situation.",

Presunto Culpable (Presumed Guilty)

Year: 2008 - Country: Mexico - Language: Spanish - Director: Roberto Hernández, Geoffrey Smith - Genre: Documentary - Runtime: - Actors: - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired: May 2007

"A pesar de ser inocente del homicidio del cual lo acusaron, Toño Zúñiga es condenado a 20 años de prisión. Trágicamente, un Tribunal de Apelación de la Ciudad de México confirma la sentencia, dejando a Toño casi sin perspectivas de recuperar su libertad. Gracias a la tenacidad de amigas y su novia, Toño logra hablar con dos abogados jóvenes, Layda Negrete y Roberto Hernández, quienes deciden pelear el caso y filmar sus esfuerzos de liberarlo. Cuando descubren que su abogado defensor había falsificado su cédula profesional, la condena se anula y las piezas están puestas para que Toño sea juzgado nuevamente. Pero esta vez, su reencuentro con el Juez que lo había condenado dos años atrás; con los Policías Judiciales que lo detuvieron, y con el Testigo que lo acusó, será videograbado. Presunto Culpable nos ofrece un asiento de primera fila a la batalla legal que desnudó al sistema de justicia mexicano." (source)


Year: 2007 - Country: Argentina - Language: Spanish - Director: Alejandro Agresti - Genre: Comedy | Drama | Romance - Runtime: 83 minutes - Actors: Carmen Maura, Rodrigo Noya, Julieta Carinali, Mex Urtizberea, Jean Pierre Nohger - Rating: PG-13 - Format: DVD - Acquired: June 2014

"Acclaimed by critics and winner of numerous awards around the globe, Valentin is an enchanting view of the world as it revolves around one delightfully precocious 8-year-old boy! With a set of absentee parents and a home life he considers a mess at best, Valentin is an extraordinarily charming and imaginative youngster whose greatest dream is to be just an ordinary kid with a real family of his own. As he schemes to fix the problems in his own life, his dogged determination and indelible spirit will bring joy, wisdom - and even romance - into the lives of the grown-ups around him! Filled with wit, humor and emotion - here's your chance to see why audiences everywhere have fallen in love with Valentin!" (source) "In 1967 Buenos Aires, eight year old Valentín lives alone with his poor widowed paternal grandmother. He has not seen his mother since he was three. His grandmother tells him that his mother was unfaithful to his father. Regardless, Valentín still misses her. His womanizing father, Vincente, is on the most part absent as a traveling salesman, he who seems more concerned about his own fortunes than sending money home to take care of his mother and son. Valentín has dreams like most young boys, his primary one being to become an astronaut." (source)

Habana Blues

Year: 2007 - Country: Cuba - Language: Spanish - Director: Benito Zambrano - Genre: Music - Runtime: 115 minutes - Actors: Roger Pera, Alberto Yoel Garcia Osorio, Roberto Sanmartn, Yailene Sierra, Tomas Cao - Rating: NR - Format: DVD - Acquired: June 2014

"Habana Blues tells the story of Ruy and Tito, two young Cubans who share a similar dream: tobecome music stars. Their families and the same circle of friends keep them grounded and motivated. But their lives will be transforme by an international offer to record an album and perform abroad, causing dilemmas and affecting relations with their loved ones. Against a backdrop where humor and universal sentiments intertwine, Habana Blues is a beautiful metaphor about dignity, friendship and love." (source)

Infancia clandestina / Clandestine Childhood

Year: 2011 - Country: Argentina - Language: Spanish - Director: Benjamin Ávila - Genre: Drama, Fantasy - Runtime: 110 minutes - Actors: Natalia Marisa Oreiro Iglesias, César Troncoso, Ernesto Alterio - Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Oct 2013

"Argentina, 1979. After years of exile, Juan (12) and his family come back to Argentina under fake identities. Juan's parents and his uncle Beto are members of the Montoneros Organization, which is fighting against the Military Junta that rules the country. Because of their political activities they are being tracked down relentlessly, and the threat of capture and even death is constant. However, Juan's daily life is also full of warmth and humor, and he quickly and easily integrates into his new environment. His friends at school and the girl he has a gigantic crush on, Maria, know him as Ernesto, a name he must not forget, since his family's survival is at stake. Juan accepts this and follows all of his parents' rules until one day he is told that they need to move again immediately, and leave his friends and Maria behind without an explanation. This is a story about militancy, undercover life, and love. The story of a clandestine childhood." -- Written by Film Movement (source)

El espíritu de la colmena / The Spirit of the Beehive

Year: 1973 - Country: Spain - Language: Spanish - Director: Víctor Erice - Genre: Drama, Fantasy - Runtime: 95 minutes - Actors: Fernando Fernán Gómez, Teresa Gimpera, Ana Torrent - Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Oct 2013

"Victor Erice's THE SPIRIT OF THE BEEHIVE (El espiritu de la colmena) is widely regarded as the greatest Spanish film of the 1970s. In a small Castilian village in 1940, directly following the country's devastating civil war, six-year-old Ana attends a traveling movie show of Frankenstein and becomes haunted by her memory of it. Produced by one of cinema's most mysterious auteurs as Franco's long regime was nearing its end, THE SPIRIT OF THE BEEHIVE is both a bewitching portrait of a child's inner life and an elusive, cloaked meditation on a nation trapped under tyranny." (source)

Ttraficante de sueños / Sleep Dealer

Year: 2008 - Country: USA - Language: Spanish - Director: Alex Rivera - Genre: Drama, Sci-Fi, Thriller - Runtime: 90 minutes - Actors: Luis Fernando Peña, Leonor Varela, Jacob Vargas - Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Oct 2013

"Set in a near-future, militarized world marked by closed borders, virtual labor and a global digital network that joins minds and experiences, three strangers risk their lives to connect with each other and break the barriers of technology." (source)

La piel que habito / The Skin I Live in

Year: 2011 - Country: Spain - Language: Spanish - Director: Pedro Almodóvar Genre: Drama | Horror | Thriller - Runtime: 120 minutes - Actors: Antonio Banderas, Elena Anaya, Jan Cornet Rating: R (Rated R for disturbing violent content including sexual assault, strong sexuality, graphic nudity, drug use and language) - Format: DVD - Acquired: Oct 2013 For his maiden voyage into horror, Spanish maestro Pedro Almodóvar leaves the gore behind for a plunge into truly disturbing territory. If he suggests more than he shows, the human body still takes center stage, starting with Toledo plastic surgeon Robert Ledgard (a chillingly understated Antonio Banderas), who did his best to restore his wife to her former glory after a fiery car crash, only to have his efforts be in vain. Since then, he's concentrated on a skin substitute that repels damage... In adapting Thierry Jonquet's Tarantula, Almodóvar has embarked on his most perfectly controlled project. Like the lovely Vera, the film offers cool, attractive surfaces, but the secret behind the woman and the world she inhabits will chill you to the bone. --Kathleen C. Fennessy (source)


Year: 2013 - Country: Mexico - Language: Spanish - Director: Pablo Larrain Genre: - Runtime: 118 minutes - Actors: Gael Garcia Bernal, Christopher Reeve Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Oct 2013

Military dictator Augusto Pinochet calls for a referendum to decide his permanence in power in 1988, the leaders of the opposition persuade a young daring advertising executive - René Saavedra - to head their campaign. With limited resources and under the constant scrutiny of the despot's watchmen, Saavedra and his team conceive of a bold plan to win the election and free their country from oppression. - Written by FICV (source)

Nora's Will / Cinco días sin Nora

Year: 2008 - Country: Mexico - Language: Spanish - Director: Mariana Chenillo - Genre: - Runtime: 92 minutes - Actors: Fernando Lujan, Ari Brickman, Enrique Arreola, Angelina Pelaez, Cecilia Suarez - Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Oct 2011 "Nora's Will - LA Times Review Kenneth Turan Critics' Pick! One of Kenneth Turan s Top Ten Films of the Year! Battles of wills between divorced couples are nothing new, but Nora's Will adds a delicious twist. The struggle in this poignant and tremendously appealing film features a man who fights a stubborn rear-guard action against his dead ex-wife's final wishes and in the process learns more than he anticipates about his family and himself. Under its original title,Cinco Dias Sin Nora; (Five Days Without Nora), this film was a great success in Mexico, winning seven Ariels, the Mexican Oscar, including best film, original screenplay and a pair of acting awards. Though this is her first feature, writer-director Mariana Chenillo displays great sureness of touch behind the camera. She creates fully imagined eccentric characters, places them in a wryly comic and specific world and takes deft pokes at the occasional rigidity of organized religion in the process. That religion is Judaism, ... --Los Angeles Times" (source)

School of Assassins

Year: 2009 - Country: USA - Language: English - Director: Robert Richter - Genre: - Runtime: 18 minutes - Actors: Father Roy Bourgeois, Congressmen Joe Kennedy, Joe Moakley, John Lewis - Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Oct 2011 "Not the best documentary you'll ever see, but an insightful, well documented view of Father Roy and the SOA Watch that you'll find. It is an important film and, hopefully, more Americans will see it and form their own opinions about how our tax dollars are being spent." (source)

The Secret in Their Eyes (El Secreto de Sus Ojos) (2010)

Year: 2010 - Country: Spain - Language: Director: Juan José Campanella - Genre: - Runtime: 129 minutes - Actors: Ricardo Darín, Soledad Villamil - Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Oct 2011 "The Secret in Their Eyes (El Secreto de Sus Ojos), an Oscar winner for Best Foreign Language Film, is part cold-case mystery, part long-lost love story, and part thriller set both in the present and in 1970s Argentina, under the tight control of its infamous military dictatorship. Director Juan José Campanella manages to tread easily across these genres with a story that's gripping, a little outlandish, and compelling--if full of a growing sense of dread. The Secret in Their Eyes stars Ricardo Darín as Benjamin, a policeman who gets pulled into investigating a decades-old crime, and becomes drawn in, almost against his will, as layers of information about the missing (murdered?) girl slowly come to light. As Benjamin investigates, he runs into a woman for whom he has long carried a torch, Irene (Soledad Villamil), an ambitious judge who had also at one point been involved in adjudicating the old crime. The chemistry between Benjamin and Irene is part of the "secret in their eyes," as the pull between the old colleagues becomes palpable. But also palpable is the hold that this unsolved crime has over Benjamin--a creepy borderline obsession that is reminiscent of the American film noir classic Laura. Fancy cinematography and well-crafted flashbacks to the era of the crime--set against the backdrop of the military dictatorship--add extra depth to what is a truly original story, told in layers with great intelligence. Fans of great mysteries and dramas--and of lost love that may again be found--will not want to miss The Secret in Their Eyes. --A.T. Hurley"

La Comunidad / Common Wealth

Year: - Country: Spain - Language: Director: Álex de la Iglesia - Genre: - Runtime: 110 minutes - Actors: Carmen Maura, Terele Pavez, Emilio Gutirrez Caba, Sancho Gracia, Maria Asquerino - Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Nov 2010

A lucky real estate agent... A decomposed body... A building full of greedy neighbors...300 million hidden in the cellar... Something smells rotten in this house. Julia finds 300 million pesetas hidden in a dead man's house while selling an apartment. She's a 40-ish real estate agent (played by Carmen Maura) now forced to face the wrath of a very peculiar community (of neighbors), headed by an unscrupulous administrator. Black humor gives way to suspense, closely followed by horror that doesn't take long in coming to a head in undisguised pandemonium

Camila (1984)

Year: 1984 - Country: Argentina - Language: Spanish - Director: María Luisa Bemberg - Genre: - Runtime: 110 minutes - Actors: Susú Pecoraro, Imanol Arias - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired: Nov 2010 Maria-Luisa Bemberg / 1984 / DVD / Spanish, English subtitles / Argentina / 90 mins.

"A young Catholic socialite from Buenos Aires falls in love and runs away with a young Jesuit priest. The two find temporary happiness in a small provincial village, but eventually they are recognized and ultimately condemned to death without a trial. Spanish with English subtitles."

Nueba Yol Vol 1 & 3 (1998)

Year: - Country: China - Language: Spanish - Director: - Genre: - Runtime: 117 minutes - Actors: Luisito Marti - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired: Nov 2010

Orodoto Balbuena comes from the Dominican Republic to New York to find the American Dream. Only that is not what he'd hope for.

El viaje de Carol / Carol's Journey (2002)

Year: 2002 - Country: Spain - Language: Spanish - Director: Imanol Uribe - Genre: - Runtime: 100 minutes - Actors: Clara Lago, Juan José Ballesta and Álvaro de Luna Rating: NR - Format: DVD - Acquired: Nov 2010

Carol, a Spanish-American twelve year old girl brought up in New York, travels with her mother to Spain for the first time in the turbulent spring of 1938, to meet her mother's family. Separated from her father, a pilot in the International Brigades involved in the Spanish Civil War, whom she adores, her arrival in her mother's native village transforms the secretive family environment. Her innocent and rebellious nature drives her to oppose a conventional world new to her. Her friendship with Maruja, the village's teacher, together with the lessons in life learnt from her grandfather and her love for local boy Tomiche will take her on an unforgettable and bittersweet journey into the world of adulthood.

La misma luna - Under the Same Moon (2007)

Year: 2007 - Country: Mexico | USA - Language: Spanish - Director: Patricia Riggen - Genre: - Runtime: 106 minutes - Actors: Eugenio Derbez, Kate del Castillo, Adrian Alonso, Maya Zapata, Carmen Salinas - Rating: PG-13 - Format: DVD - Acquired: Nov 2010

Under the Same Moon puts a human face--several very appealing faces--on the dilemma of Mexican "illegals" living and working clandestinely in the United States and the loved ones back home they're supporting. Rosario, a young single parent, left her village four years ago and jumped the border to find work in Los Angeles; ever since, she and son Carlitos, now nine, haven't seen each other, but she faithfully calls him from the same street-corner pay phone every Sunday morning. When Rosario's mother--the boy's guardian--dies in her sleep, Carlitos taps into an impressive reservoir of street smarts and contrives his own border crossing. The border is just the first of many obstacles to a mother-and-child reunion--not least the fact that the only address the boy has for Rosario is a mental image of the corner she always phones from... --Richard T. Jameson (

El Norte (1983)

Year: 1983 - Country: USA - Director: Gregory Nava - Genre: Adventure | Drama | Thriller - Runtime: 139 minutes - Actors: Zaide Silvia Gutierrez, David Villalpando - Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Dec. 2009 "Directed by Gregory Nava, who wrote the screenplay with his wife Anna Thomas, El Norte portrays both the beauty and harshness of Rosa and Enrique's homeland; the low comedy and justifiable paranoia that mark their passage through Mexico, especially Tijuana, a "lost city" where everyone is "temporary"; and the culture shock of encountering America, where "even the poorest people have toilets." The filmmakers were after more than docudrama; their movie reaches for a mystical dimension, weaving imagistic and color motifs from native myth into the visual design, as well as incorporating periodic declarations about life on Earth being only a dream. The problem is that much of this comes off as earnest schematic rather than compelling cinema. The film is most alive in the presences of newcomers Gutiérrez and Villalpando; their actorly gifts are modest but sincere, and the mixture of enthusiasm and trepidation in their performances is genuine (they themselves were "without papers" as they shot their Los Angeles scenes).",

Como agua para chocolate / Like Water for Chocolate (1992)

Year: 1992 - Country: Mexico - Director: Alfonso Arau - Genre: Drama | Romance - Runtime: 105 min - Actors: Marco Leonardi, Lumi Cavazos, Regina Torné, Mario Iván Martínez, Ada Carrasco - Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Dec. 2009 Expect to be very hungry (and perhaps amorous) after watching this contemporary classic in the small genre of food movies that includes Babette's Feast and Big Night. Director Alfonso Arau (A Walk in the Clouds), adapting a novel by his former wife, Laura Esquivel, tells the story of a young woman (Lumi Cavazos) who learns to suppress her passions under the eye of a stern mother, but channels them into her cooking. The result is a steady stream of cuisine so delicious as to be an almost erotic experience for those lucky enough to have a bite. The film's quotient of magic realism feels a little stock, but the story line is good and Arau's affinity for the sensuality of food (and of nature) is sublime. You might want to rush off to a good Mexican restaurant afterward, but that's a good thing. --Tom Keogh,

The Orphanage / El orfanato (2007)

Year: 2007 - Country: Mexico | Spain - Director: Juan Antonio Bayona - Genre: Horror | Drama | Mystery | Thriller - Runtime: 105 min - Actors: Belén Rueda, Fernando Cayo, Roger Príncep, Mabel Rivera, Montserrat Carulla - Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Dec. 2009 It's only his first film, but Spain’s Juan Antonio Bayona has already figured out the secret to a successful supernatural thriller: emphasize character over special effects. Like Walter Salles's Dark Water and Alejandro Amenábar's The Others, The Orphanage pivots on a pretty woman and an unusual child. When her old orphanage goes on the market, Laura (Belén Rueda, Amenábar's The Sea Inside) and Carlos (Fernando Cayo) settle in with their son, Simón (Roger Príncep). Once acclimated to the remote seaside surroundings, they plan to re-open it as a home for special-needs children. Meanwhile, their seven-year-old doesn't know he's adopted or that he has a life-threatening illness. He does, however, have a lot of imaginary playmates. When Simón disappears without a trace, his parents contact the police, but to no avail. Because Laura has been hearing odd noises and having strange visions, they proceed to consult a medium. Aurora (Geraldine Chaplin, speaking perfect Spanish) is convinced they aren't alone. Carlos has his doubts, but Laura makes like a detective and revisits her childhood--through photographs, home movies, and exploration of the spooky stone manor--to determine who or what abducted her son. Produced and presented by Guillermo Del Toro, The Orphanage is less fanciful than his works, though it does bear a vague resemblance to the ghostly Devil's Backbone. There are a few gory make-up effects, but Bayona mostly preys on our fear of the unknown to craft a first-rate fright fest. --Kathleen C. Fennessyén-Rueda/dp/B0015ET3YO,

Men with Guns (1997/II)

Year: 1997 - Country: USA - Director: John Sayles - Genre: Drama - Runtime: 127 minutes - Actors: Federico Luppi, Damián Delgado, Dan Rivera González, Tania Cruz, Damián Alcázar - Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Dec. 2009 It is impossible to predict where John Sayles will travel at any given time in his film career, but Men with Guns is one of the director's most surprising journeys. Shot in Spanish, with a little-known cast, the film is a beguiling mix of the political and the mythical. A well-heeled doctor (Argentine actor Federico Luppi) in an unnamed Latin country leaves his comfortable home, in search of former medical students who may be caught in the political violence of the countryside. Although Sayles casts an unflinching eye on the issues of poverty and "willful ignorance" (embodied by the doctor, a well-meaning but complacent man), Men with Guns has a lush visual style and a great grab-bag of songs on the soundtrack. It's a slow and sometimes dreamlike movie, but by the time we reach the end it feels as though something special has transpired. --Robert Horton,

Kamchatka (2002)

Year: 2002 - Country: Argentina - Director: Marcelo Piñeyro - Genre: Drama - Runtime: 106 min - Actors: Cecilia Roth, Evelyn Domínguez, Fernanda Mistral, Hector Alterio, Leticia Brédice - Rating: NR - Format: DVD - Acquired: Dec. 2009

This is a nice, carefully-paced, cleverly-written film with an underlying tension that approaches an oppressive period of history from the viewpoint of a family's hideaway. Particularly enjoyable are the metaphors dealing with Harry Houdini (actually more subtle and clever than the title analogy of Kamchatka) and the structure of the plot that suggests the family's plight is part of a historic cycle of similar plights." (source),

Al otro lado (2004)

Year: 2004 - Country: Mexico - Director: Gustavo Loza - Genre: Drama - Runtime: 90 min. - Actors: Adrian Alonso, Adrian Marquez, Ronny Bandomo Casanova, Carmen Maura, Alejandro Lago - Rating: NR - Format: DVD - Acquired: Dec. 2009

"This drama features three stories about the bonds between children and absent parents. A Cuban boy who lives in poverty with his mother longs to visit his father in the United States, a Moroccan girl attempts to reunite with her father, and in Mexico, and a boy disobeys his father to visit a strange lagoon. These related vignettes showcase the powerful hold that parents have upon their children, which often remains strong despite their absence." (source),

Días de fútbol / Football Days (2003)

Year: 2003 - Country: Spain - Director: David Serrano - Genre: Comedy - Runtime: 113 min. - Actors: Alberto San Juan, Ernesto Alterio, Natalia Verbeke, Pere Ponce, Fernando Tejero - Rating: NR - Format: DVD - Acquired: Dec. 2009

"Jorge's life is sad and depressing. He finds his work boring, his girlfriend has just left him and his friends are all losers. Antonio, his best friend, is just out of jail after various petty crimes and has decided to become a psychologist. But he can only get a job as a cab driver, so he decides to practice his special brand of psychology on the road. Jorge's other friends aren't doing much better, so he and Antonio try to find a way to change their miserable lives. The solution is to resurrect a soccer team they had in their youth and finally win something in life. Nothing seems to work at first, and they lose every match. However, when Antonio's close friend Serafin appears on the scene, things change as Serafin finds some unusual ways of succeeding on the soccer field." (source),

Martín (Hache) (1997)

Year: 1997 - Country: Argentina - Director: Adolfo Aristarain - Genre: Drama - Runtime: 130 min - Actors: Federico Luppi, Juan Diego Botto, Eusebio Poncela, Cecilia Roth, Sancho Gracia - Rating: NR - Format: DVD - Acquired: Dec. 2009

"19-year-old Argentina Martin has a nearly fatal drug overdose. After that his mother sends him to Madrid, where his film director father (also called Martin) lives with his new much younger lover Alicia and gay actor friend Dante." (source),

El Silencio de Neto (The Silence of Neto) (1994)

Year: 1994 - Country: Guatemala/USA - Director: Luis Argueta - Genre: Drama - Runtime: 106 min. - Actors: Luis Argueta, Oscar Almengor, Eva Tamargo - Rating: NR - Format: DVD - Acquired: Dec. 2009

Plot/summary: "This politically inspired drama represents Guatemala's first commercial feature film. Set in Guatemala, 1954, at the time a U.S. funded government overthrow of left-wing president Jacob Arbenz, it chronicles the struggles of a pre-adolescent boy to grow up in a tumultuous time. Neto, at the funeral of his uncle Ernesto is suddenly visited by his uncle's ghost. Their conversation becomes a flashback of six months earlier. The memory follows the changes wrought by the intervention of U.S. military and local troops as the coup begins. Neto's family's life is profoundly affected by the military action. Neto's father, a teacher, loses his job to military personnel. His classmates and their families begin to disappear. Neto and his family must flee their city. There is also conflict between his father and uncle, His father has always put his responsibility to his family ahead of all else and his uncle has wandered the world attempting to find himself. Neto has asthma and the women in his family smother him with concern." (

Caballos Salvajes (1995)

Year: 1995 - Country: Argentina - Director: Marcelo Piñeyro - Genre: Drama - Runtime: 122 min. - Actors: Héctor Alterio, Antonio Grimau, Cipe Lincovsky, Federico Luppi, Jorge Petraglia - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired: Dec. 2009

Plot/summary: "A road movie that begins when a man tries to rob a bank and the bank's clerk, a yuppie, pretends the thief has kidnapped him to help him run away. While they're running away, they meet a girl who becomes part of the team." (source)éctor-Alterio/dp/B0006SSOS6,

Johnny 100 Pesos (1995)

Year: 1995 - Country: Chile, Mexico - Director: Gustavo Graef-Marino - Genre: Action, Crime, Drama, Thriller - Runtime: 90 - Actors: Armando Araiza, Patricia Rivera - Rating: NR - Format: DVD - Acquired: Dec. 2009

Johnny, the young student and his 4 friends, decide to rob a bank. They pretend they are customers, and suddenly they take out pistols and force the staff to give all the money to them. When they try to leave, the police appear. The media deal with this story immediately and broadcast everything ... Written by Kornel Osvart (source),

Bread and Roses (2000)

Year: 2000 - Country: - Director: Ken Loach - Genre: Drama - Runtime: 110 min. - Actors: Pilar Padilla, Adrien Brody - Rating: Rated R for strong language and brief nudity - Format: DVD - Acquired: Dec. 2009

Two Latina sisters work as cleaners in a downtown office building, and fight for the right to unionize. // Maya is a quick-witted young woman who comes over the Mexican border without papers and makes her way to the LA home of her older sister Rosa. Rosa gets Maya a job as a janitor: a non-union janitorial service has the contract, the foul-mouthed supervisor can fire workers on a whim, and the service-workers' union has assigned organizer Sam Shapiro to bring its "justice for janitors" campaign to the building. Sam finds Maya a willing listener, she's also attracted to him. Rosa resists, she has an ailing husband to consider. The workers try for public support; management intimidates workers to divide and conquer. Rosa and Maya as well as workers and management may be set to collide. Written by {} (source)

Biography - Evita: The Woman Behind the Myth (A&E DVD Archives) (bio: true story)

Year: 1997 - Country: - Director: - Genre: - Runtime: 50 min. - Actors: - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired: May 2009

To some, she was a hero. To others, she was a symbol of naked ambition. To the world, she remains a legend.Eva Duarte de Peron "Evita" is one of the most controversial figures in history. A minor actress when she married Argentine president-to-be Juan Peron, her political power and prestige eventually equaled, and perhaps eclipsed, his. Was she a power-hungry Marie Antoinette, as detractors claim? Or was she really the savior of the working poor?In this remarkable program, rare photographs and films tell Evita's real story, from her humble birth to her tragic death of cancer at 33. Close aids and bitter enemies offer their firsthand accounts, and consider why she continues to fascinate us today.

Soldados de Salamina / Salamina Soldiers

Year: 2004 - Country: Spain - Director: David Trueba - Genre: - Runtime: 119 - Actors: Ariadna Gil, Ramon Fontserè - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired: May 2009

When the professor and writer Lola Sánchez is assigned to write a column in the newspaper about the Spanish Civil War, she researches and finds for the first time about the shooting of Rafael Sánchez Mazas. Lola has lost her passion for writing, and she becomes intrigued about Rafael, who was a writer and journalist that returned to Spain from the Italy of Mussolini and founded the fascist party Spanish Falange, becoming advisor of the leader Jose Antonio Primo de Rivera. When the lefts won the election in 1936, the Falange became illegal, and later there was a military coup d'stat. Rafael miraculously escaped from the shooting and was spared by an unknown soldier. Lola decides to write a book about the historic event and to disclose the identity of the unknown soldier. But her acquaintance Conchi advises that her work is affected by her lack of passion. When Lola reads a work of a student about the heroic former soldier Miralles, Lola becomes obsessed to find him and see of he is connected to the event. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil,

The Bronze Screen: 100 Years of the Latino Image in Hollywood

Year: 2002 - Country: Spain - Director: Alberto Domínguez, Nancy De Los Santos - Genre: - Runtime: - Actors: - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired: May 2009

"The Bronze Screen" honors the past, illuminates the present, and opens a window to the future of Latinos in motion pictures. From silent movies to urban gang films, stereotypes of the Greaser, the Lazy Mexican, the Latin Lover and the Dark Lady are examined. Rare and extensive footage traces the progression of this distorted screen image to the increased prominence of today's Latino actors, writers and directors. Featuring insights on Anthony Quinn, Rita Hayworth, Rita Moreno, Raquel Welch, Benicio Del Toro, Antonio Banderas, Desi Arnaz, Salma Hayek, John Leguizamo, Jennifer Lopez, Jimmy Smits, Raul Julia, Cesar Romero, Carmen Miranda, Dolores del Rio, Lupe Velez, Ricardo Montalban, Jose Ferrer, Cheech Marin and many more.,

La flor de mi secreto / The Flower of My Secret

Year: 1996 - Country: Spain - Director: Pedro Almodóvar, Daniel Cebrián - Genre: - Runtime: - Actors: Marisa Paredes, Juan Echanove - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired: May 2009

Leo Macias writes sentimental novels with great success but hidden under a pseudonym, Amanda Gris. She is unhappy with her professional life and with her husband, a soldier working in Brussels and Bosnia that is never at home. She will try anything to change her life. Written by Miguel A. Andrade,

El Mariachi

Year: 1993 - Country: Spain - Director: Robert Rodriguez - Genre: - Runtime: - Actors: Carlos Gallardo, Consuelo Gómez - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired: May 2009

El Mariachi just wants to play his guitar and carry on the family tradition. Unfortunately, the town he tries to find work in has another visitor...a killer who carries his guns in a guitar case. The drug lord and his henchmen mistake El Mariachi for the killer, Azul, and chase him around town trying to kill him and get his guitar case. New film transfer from original negatives supervised by Robert Rodriguez! Featurette: "Sneak Peak: Once Upon A Time in Mexico." Audio Commentary with Director Robert Rodriguez. Featurette: 10 Minute Film School. Featurette: Robert Rodriguez's Student Film "Bed Head."

Lista de espera / Waiting List

Year: 2000 - Country: Spain - Director: Juan Carlos Tabío - Genre: - Runtime: - Actors: Vladimir Cruz, Thaimí Alvariño - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired: May 2009

At a rundown bus station in rural Cuba, the line of passengers waiting just keeps getting longer. The problem is that every bus that passes by is already full. Their only hope is to wait for the station's bus to be fixed. As the disparate group settles in, relationships start forming between the passengers: Emilio (Vladimir Cruz), a young engineer, becomes smitten with a beautiful young woman (Thaimi Alvarino) who is en route to meet her Spanish fiancé, a blind man (Jorge Perugorria) gets support from the others to go to the head of the line. Frustration and disorder reign when the one bus brakes down and no one can leave. Resigned to working together, the group magically transforms the station into a beautiful place where no one wants to leave. Award-winning director Juan Carlos Tabío (Strawberry and Chocolate) successfully blends magical realism and social commentary in this crowd-pleasing romantic comedy. DVD: 5.1, Interview/Making Of, subtitle control, trailer, weblinks,

Voces inocentes / Innocent Voices

Year: 2004 - Country: Spain - Director: Luis Mandoki - Genre: Drama | War - Runtime: 110 minutes - Actors: Daniel Jiménez Cacho, Ofelia Medina, Guillermo Rios, Victor (Kino) Gonzalez, Jésus Ochoa - Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Sep 2008

Based on the true story of screenwriter Oscar Torres's embattled childhood in 1980's El Salvador, Innocent Voices is the poignant tale of Chava, an eleven-year-old boy. Chava suddenly becomes the "man of the house" in a time when the government's army is forcibly recruiting twelve year olds to battle against the peasant rebels of the FMLN. It is a story of life, love, the hope of peace, and the ennobling power of the human spirit.

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Princesas (2005)

Year: 2005 - Country: Spain - Director: Fernando León de Aranoa - Genre: - Runtime: 114 minutes - Actors: Candela Peña, Micaela Nevárez, Mariana Cordero, Llum Barrera, Violeta Pérez - Rating: UNRATED - Format: DVD - Acquired: Sep 2008 Two young prostitutes in madrid develop a friendship based on their desire for a better life. Although they work in an industry where they are objectified & abused by men they find hope even in the grimmest of circumstances by pretending that they are princesses. Studio: Genius Products Inc Release Date: 03/27/2007

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El laberinto del fauno / Pan's Labyrinth (2006)

Year: 2006 - Country: Spain - Director: Guillermo del Toro - Genre: - Runtime: 119 minutes - Actors: Ariadna Gil, Ivana Baquero, Sergi López, Maribel Verdú, Doug Jones - Rating: Rated R for graphic violence and some language - Format: DVD - Acquired: May 2007 Inspired by the Brothers Grimm, Jorge Luis Borges, and Guillermo del Toro's own unlimited imagination, Pan's Labyrinth is a fairytale for adults. Ofelia (Ivana Baquero) may only be 12, but the worlds she inhabits, both above and below ground, are dark as anything del Toro has conjured. Set in rural Spain, circa 1944, Ofelia and her widowed mother, Carmen (Ariadna Gil, Belle Epoque), have just moved into an abandoned mill with Carmen's new husband, Captain Vidal (Sergi López, With a Friend like Harry). Carmen is pregnant with his son. Other than her sickly mother and kindly housekeeper Mercedes (Maribel Verdú, Y Tu Mamá También), the dreamy Ofelia is on her own. Vidal, an exceedingly cruel man, couldn't be bothered. He has informers to torture. Ofelia soon finds that an entire universe exists below the mill. Her guide is the persuasive Faun (Doug Jones, Mimic). As her mother grows weaker, Ofelia spends more and more time in the satyr's labyrinth. He offers to help her out of her predicament if she'll complete three treacherous tasks. Ofelia is willing to try, but does this alternate reality really exist or is it all in her head? Del Toro leaves that up to the viewer to decide in a beautiful, yet brutal twin to The Devil's Backbone, which was also haunted by the ghost of Franco. Though it lacks the humor of Hellboy, Pan's Labyrinth represents Guillermo Del Toro at the top of his considerable game. --Kathleen C. Fennessy

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Year: 2007 - Country: Spain - Director: Pedro Almodóvar - Genre: Comedy / Drama - Runtime: 121 minutes - Actors: Penélope Cruz, Carmen Maura, Lola Dueñas, Blanca Portillo, Yohana Cobo - Rating: USA:R - Format: DVD - Acquired: May 2007 (replaced lost copy Sep 2008) Spanish for "Coming Back," Volver is a return to the all-female format of All About My Mother. Unlike Pedro Almodóvar's previous two pictures, the story revolves around a group of women in Madrid and his native La Mancha. (The cast received a collective best actress award at Cannes.) Raimunda (a zaftig Penélope Cruz) is the engine powering this heartfelt, yet humorous vehicle. When husband Paco (Antonio de la Torre) is murdered, Raimunda makes like Mildred Pierce to deflect attention away from daughter Paula (Yohana Cobo). After telling everyone the lout has left, she struggles to conceal his body. The other women in her life all have secrets of their own. Her sister, Sole (Lola Dueñas), for instance, has taken in their mother, Irene (a sprightly Carmen Maura). Since Irene perished in a fire, is this person a ghost or simply a woman who looks like her? Then there's their childhood friend, Agustina (Blanca Portillo), who is desperate to find out why her mother disappeared after the blaze. Was she responsible? Almodóvar deftly blends the ghost story with the murder mystery in his tribute to the Italian neo-realist films of the 1950s. The resilient Raimunda is a throwback to the earthy heroines of Sophia Loren and Anna Magnani. The latter appears in Luchino Visconti's Bellissima, which shows up on Sole's television one night (thus confirming the link). If Almodóvar’s 16th feature lacks the emotional punch of the more audacious Talk to Her, it's less heavy-handed than Bad Education and Cruz is a revelation. --Kathleen C. Fennessy

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Poniente [PAL, Reg.2]

Year: 2002 - Country: Spain - Director: Chus Gutiérrez - Genre: Drama / Romance - Runtime: 92 minutes - Actors: José Coronado, Mariola Fuentes, Antonio Dechent, Antonio de la Torre, Álex Angulo - Rating: Spain:T - Format: DVD - Acquired: May 2007

Product Description Spain released, PAL/Region 2 DVD: it WILL NOT play on standard US DVD player. You need multi-region PAL/NTSC DVD player to view it in USA/Canada. Languages: o English (subtitles) o Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1) o English (Dolby Digital 2.0) o French (Dolby Digital 2.0) o German (Dolby Digital 2.0) Synopsis: Spanish director Chus Gutierrez draws attention to illegal immigrants and the racism they are forced to endure in her 2002 social issue drama Poniente. Madrid-based schoolteacher Lucía (Cuca Escribano) returns to her birthplace in Southern Spain after her father passes away. Upon her arrival, Lucía reconnects with her hometown and decides to assume leadership of her father's greenhouse business -- a development that draws the ire of her cousin Miguel (Antonio Dechent), who would have taken over if Lucía hadn't. In due time, Lucía meets her father's business accountant, Curro (Jose Coronado), and promptly takes a keen personal interest in the attractive, sensitive man. As Curro and Lucía share a compassionate regard for the illegal immigrants they employ, both are forced to confront the outright racism coming from the surrounding community, as well as from some of their other non-immigrant employees. As tensions come to a head, Lucía is forced to make some business decisions that will have long lasting -- and quite disparate -- effects on her relationships with her employees and the surrounding community. Special Features: o Filmographies o Interactive Menu o Making Of o Scene Access o Trailer(s)


¡¿Qué he hecho yo para merecer esto?! / What Have I Done to Deserve This? (1985)

Year: 1985 - Country: Spain - Director: Pedro Almodóvar - Genre: Comedy / Drama - Runtime: 101 min - Actors: Ángel de Andrés López, José Manuel Bello, Beni, Diego Caretti, Verónica Forqué - Rating: Spain:18 - Format: DVD - Acquired: May 2007 Pedro Almodóvar scored his first international hit with What Have I Done to Deserve This?, cementing his reputation as Spain's bad-boy director of darkly comedic melodramas. Many of the themes that dominate Almodóvar's later films are evident here, especially his sympathetic affection for downtrodden women like Gloria (Carmen Maura), an exhausted housewife who's addicted to No-Do-z tablets and spends 18-hour days cleaning apartments and tending (just barely) to her teenage sons (one deals drugs, the other offers sex to local perverts), neglectful husband, and looney-tunes mother-in-law--all of whom have a particular knack for getting on her nerves. Toss in a prostitute neighbor, an accidental murder, and a pet lizard named "Money," and you've got the makings of a soap opera by way of Luis Buñuel and John Waters, served up with Almodóvar's distinctive blend of compassionate humanity and kinky outrageousness. --Jeff Shannon

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El Calentito (2005)

Year: 2005 - Country: Spain - Director: Chus Gutiérrez - Genre: Comedy / Music - Runtime: 89 minutes - Actors: Antonio Dechent, Verónica Sánchez, Isabel Ordaz, Aitor Merino, Jordi Vilches - Rating: NR - Format: DVD - Acquired: May 2007

Product Description: Spain 1981 the Franco slumber is about to heat up when innocent virgin Sara plunges into the raucous world of El Calentito, an underground nightclub exploding with punk rock and sexual liberation. The club showcases the all-female band Las Sioux led by the beautiful Carmen, a lesbian who resembles Joan Jett and super sassy, often topless Leo. When a third member of the group leaves, the band members convince Sara to join them, encouraging her to toss away her conservative upbringing and embrace a life of rock and roll. But as Sara prepares to take center stage and the Spanish government is on the verge of collapse, the na?ve virgin discovers an opportunity to start a revolution on stage, while El Calentito s doors swirl in a sea of sex, anarchy and celebration!

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Te doy mis ojos / Take My Eyes (2003)

Year: 2003 - Country: Spain - Director: Icíar Bollaín - Genre: Noir thriller - Runtime: 106 minutes - Actors: Laia Marull, Luis Tosar, Candela Peña, Rosa Maria Sardà, Kiti Manver - Rating: NR - Format: DVD - Acquired: May 2007 Take My Eyes, a drama about a couple entangled in an abusive relationship, proves that Spanish Director Icíar Bollaín has studied the aggressor's mindset in order to portray the violent husband, Antonio (Luis Tosar) with a certain amount of sympathy. The film enlightens rather than enrages. Antonio, who beats his wife Pilar (Laia Marull), is a complex character overcome by his insecurity that Pilar will leave him. Take My Eyes opens on Pilar taking her son to live with her sister, safe from Antonio's uncontrolled anger. Antonio stalks Pilar, warning that he can't survive without her, then signs up for therapy. Conversely, Pilar is co-dependent, unable to see Antonio's cruelty because of her blind belief in the construct of marriage due to her mother's past, similar history with her deceased husband. Pilar's sister's wedding and Pilar's new job as a museum docent acquired in her effort to command independence exacerbates the couple's dilemma. Pilar returns to Antonio but a terrifying incident scares her permanently away from him. Throughout, one senses Pilar's impending danger, but the complexities of her and Antonio's arrangement, including her motherly role in their relationship, sheds light on domestic violence for those viewers who are baffled by it. Take My Eyes also explains how detrimentally far couples will go to stay together for their child. Well-acted and nicely written, Take My Eyes is a smart film about the horrors of abuse. The docudrama extra on this DVD, A Love That Kills, further delves into cruelty in a more educational setting, the counselor's office. --Trinie Dalton

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Insomnio / Sleepless in Madrid (1998) [replacement copy]

Year: 1998 - Country: Spain - Director: Chus Gutiérrez - Genre: Comedy - Runtime: - Actors: Cristina Marcos, Candela Peña, Ernesto Alterio, María Pujalte, Ginés García Millán - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired: May 2007

Three young couples in Madrid cope with relationships and insomnia in this offbeat romantic comedy from Spanish director Chus Gutierrez.
Synopsis: In this Spanish comedy-drama, yuppie Eva (Christina Marcos), employed in TV production, is kept awake by her baby. Real estate salesman Juan (Ernesto Alterio) is due to marry Isabel (Maria Pujalte), a compulsive shopper. Dropped by her boyfriend, Alba (Candela Pena) turns to alcohol and sex. The plot threads become interlinked as Eva befriends Juan and also hires Alba as a babysitter. Nerves grow taut as the wedding day approaches for Juan and Isabel. Not to be confused with several other works carrying this same title -- the 1994 German comedy; Stephen King's 1994 novel; the 1996 Steve Marshall movie with Monica Ford; or the 1997 Norwegian psychological thriller with Stellan Skarsgard. ~ Bhob Stewart, All Movie Guide

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Los lunes al sol / Mondays in the Sun

Year: 2002 - Country: Spain - Director: Fernando León de Aranoa - Genre: Drama - Runtime: 113 min - Actors: Javier Bardem, Luis Tosar - Rating: Spain:13 / MPAA: Rated R for language - Format: DVD - Acquired: October 2006

This is the story of those who live in a constant Sunday, those who spend mondays under the Sun. The story of people who worked in a dockyard but now are unemployed.

2001: men without jobs, in the port city of Vigo. Six men worked in a shipyard, now shuttered. They pass the time at La Naval, a bar opened by one of them after the yard closed. They face their futures in makeshift ways: Rico has his bar and a sharp 15-year-old daughter, Reina has become a watchman and a moralizer, Lino fills out job applications, Amador drinks heavily and talks of his wife's return; José is married to Ana, who works at a cannery and tires of being the breadwinner amidst José's emasculated moodiness; Santa, the group's conscience and troublemaker, occasionally fantasizes about Australia. In truth, all are joined like Siamese twins, adrift.

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Year: 2004 - Country: Uruguay - Director: Juan Pablo Rebella, Pablo Stoll - Genre: Comedy / Drama - Runtime: 94 min - Actors: Andrés Pazos, Mirella Pascual - Rating: Spain:13 - Format: DVD - Acquired: October 2006

The deadpan style of Jim Jarmusch meets Aki Kaurismaki’s wry sensibility in this perversely funny story set in Montevideo, Uruguay. When Jacobo, a lonely sock factory owner, hears about the impending visit of his irritatingly cheerful brother, who he hasn't seen in years, he enlists his faithful assistant Marta to pretend to be his wife.

When his long-lost brother resurfaces, Jacobo, desperate to prove his life has added up to something, looks to scrounge up a wife. He turns to Marta, an employee at his sock factory, with whom he has a prickly relationship. the owner of a sock factory in Montevideo, and Marta, his employee, realize that their estranged relationship needs to change when Jacobo's long-lost brother prompting them to pose as a married couple.

El Abrazo partido / Lost Embrace

Year: 2004 - Country: Argentina - Director: Daniel Burman - Genre: Comedy - Runtime: 100 min - Actors: Daniel Hendler, Adriana Aizemberg - Rating: USA:Not Rated / Spain:T / Chile:14 - Format: DVD - Acquired: October 2006

This is Ariel's world: the small, slightly seedy shopping center in downtown Buenos Aires, where the Italian shopkeepers scream all day, the Koreans sell feng-shui and old Osvaldo sells nothing. Where Ariel's mother runs a lingerie shop and his brother deals in import-export. It's a comfortable little world, in spite of an undercurrent of malaise and uncertainty. Many young people are searching for their immigrant roots to obtain a coveted foreign passport, the key to a world full of promise. Ariel, however, wants more than a passport from Poland, where his grandparents fled to escape the Holocaust. He wants to understand. Why his father left his family shortly after his birth to fight a war in Israel. Why he never returned. And why this seems to leave his mother and brother indifferent...But the truth changes. And when Ariel's father returns, he brings with him new truths, a new story and, ultimately, a long-overdue embrace--one that had been lost for so long.

Flores De Otro Mundo / Flowers From Another World [replacement copy]

Year: 1999 - Country: Spain - Director: Icíar Bollaín - Genre: Comedy / Drama - Runtime: 108 min - Actors: José Sancho, Luis Tosar, Lissete Mejía, Chete Lera, Marilyn Torres - Rating: Spain:T / Argentina:13 - Format: DVD - Acquired: October 2006

In a remote Spanish village overrun by bachelors, a group of vibrant women arrive by bus to try their hand at romance. Director Iciar Bollain charts the bond that form between three couples--a middle-aged builder and a Cuban gold digger, a harried daughter and her sensitive suitor, and a man and woman who are both inextricably tied to their respective hometowns. Bittersweet and closely observed, Bollain's film "makes us laugh and makes us cry" (Heraldo de Aragon). In Spanish with English subtitles.

El otro lado de la cama / The Other Side of the Bed

Year: 2002 - Country: Spain - Director: Emilio Martínez Lázaro - Genre: Comedy / Drama / Musical / Romance - Runtime: 114 min - Actors: Ernesto Alterio, Paz Vega, Guillermo Toledo, Natalia Verbeke, etc. - Rating: Spain:13 / USA:R - Format: DVD - Acquired: October 2006

Sometimes the game of love requires a little cheating… The Other Side of the Bed is a raucous and sexy romantic comedy with a musical twist. The film tells the story of two couples, along with a collection of their friends and co-workers, whose switching back and forth between lovers leads to lies and heartache – and lots of song and dance. / When Paula (Natalia Verbeke) leaves her mate Pedro (Guillermo Toledo), he misses her and looks for comfort with his best friends, Javier (Ernesto Alterio) and Sonia (Paz Vega). Paula is having an affair with Javier. The cuckold Pedro tries to find who is the secret lover of Paula, and hires a private eye. Meanwhile, while comforting Pedro, Sonia has one night stand with him and Javier thinks she is cheating him with her lesbian friend Lucia (Nathalie Poza).

El día que me amen

Year: 2003 - Country: Argentina - Director: Daniel Barone - Genre: Drama / Romance - Runtime: 110 min - Actors: Adrián Suar, Leticia Brédice, Alfredo Casero, Jorge Marrale, etc. - Rating: USA:Not Rated / Argentina:13 - Format: DVD - Acquired: October 2006

Two childhood friends reunite as adults. Both have embarked on different journeys, come to personal impasses and now find themselves looking for answers where their journeys began. Mental illness and the power of friendship. Mara and Joaquín were childhood friends, next-door neighbors. They are now in their early 30s. She's returned to Acassuno after eight years abroad, ostensibly to audition for a part in a musical. Joaquín has been a recluse in his parents' house, perhaps because Mara left without a word years before. Mara seeks to renew the friendship, which may be good for Joaquín, but it soon becomes clear that both face formidable obstacles to a lasting relationship with anyone. The past contains both causes of unhappiness and keys to change.

Esperando al mesías / Waiting for the Messiah

Year: 2000 - Country: Argentina - Director: Daniel Burman - Genre: Comedy / Drama - Runtime: 97 min - Actors: Daniel Hendler, Stefania Sandrelli, Melina Petriella, Héctor Alterio,Enrique Piñeyro, etc. - Rating: Argentina:16, USA:R - Format: DVD - Acquired: October 2006

In the Jewish section of Buenos Aires, a young man faces questions of career and love after his mother dies; should he stay in the protective embrace of his Jewish culture and marry his childhood sweetheart, or venture out into the world where he has met a beautiful, confused, bisexual Christian artist? Waiting for the Messiah is a poignant and funny film about self-discovery and passionate confusion. Spanish with English subtitles.

Diarios de motocicleta / The Motorcycle Diaries

Year: 2004 - Country: - Director: Walter Salles - Genre: Adventure / Biography / Drama - Runtime: 126 min - Actors: Gael García Bernal, Rodrigo De la Serna - Rating: USA: R for language, Switzerland:12, Canada:14A - Format: DVD - Acquired: October 2006 (replaced lost copy Sep 2008)

"The Motorcycle Diaries" is based on the journals of Che Guevara, leader of the Cuban Revolution. In his memoirs, Guevara recounts adventures he, and best friend Alberto Granado, had while crossing South America by motorcycle in the early 1950s. The beauty of the South American landscape and of Gael Garcia Bernal (Y Tu Mama Tambien, Bad Education) gives The Motorcycle Diaries a charisma that is decidedly apolitical. But this portrait of the young Che Guevara (later to become a militant revolutionary) is half buddy-movie, half social commentary--and while that may seem an unholy hybrid, under the guidance of Brazillian director Walter Salles (Central Station) the movie is quietly passionate. Guevara and his friend Alberto Granado (Rodrigo de la Serna, a lusty and engaging actor) set off from Buenos Aires, hoping to circumnavigate the continent on a leaky motorcycle. They end up travelling more by foot, hitchhiking, and raft, but their experience of the land and the people affects them profoundly. No movie could affect an audience the same way, but The Motorcycle Diaries gives a soulful glimpse of an awakening social conscience, and that's worth experiencing. --Bret Fetzer

Maria Full of Grace / Maria, llena eres de gracia

Year: 2003 - Country: US/Colombia - Director: Joshua Marston - Genre: Drama / Thriller / Crime - Runtime: 101 min - Actors: Catalina Sandino Moreno, Virgina Ariza, Yenny Paola Vega, Rodrigo Sánchez Borhorquez, Charles Albert Patiño - Rating: MPAA: Rated R for drug content and language - Format: DVD - Acquired: Oct. 2006

The harrowing experiences of a 17-year-old Colombian girl who becomes a heroin runner are detailed in Joshua Marston's acclaimed directorial debut. Leaving her desperate home life behind, Maria (Catalina Sandino Moreno, in an award-winning role) takes an offer to transport heroin into the United States. Swallowing small balloons of the drug, which will undoubtedly kill her if they burst, Maria makes round-trip flights smuggling the contraband out of the country. The more flights she takes, the deeper she sinks into her new world. A very tense, realistic depiction of the drug trade and its unfortunate victims, Maria Full of Grace won the Alfred Bauer Prize for Best First Film at the 2004 Berlin International Film Festival and the Dramatic Audience Award at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival. In Spanish with English subtitles.

Plata quemada / Burnt Money

Year: 2000 - Country: Argentina - Director: Marcelo Piñeyro - Genre: Action / Drama / Thriller / Crime / Romance - Runtime: 125 min - Actors: Leonardo Sbaraglia, Eduardo Noriega - Rating: USA:R / Argentina:18 - Format: DVD - Acquired: October 2006

Burnt Money, which premiered at the 2000 Toronto International Film Festival, is set in Argentina in 1965 and is the fourth film by director Marcelo Piñeyro. This true story follows the tumultuous relationship between two men who became lovers and ultimately ruthless bank robbers in a notoriously famous footnote in the annals of Argentinian crime history. Nene (Leonardo Sbaraglia), Angel (Eduardo Noriega) and Cuervo (Pablo Echarri) are bank robbers who flee from Argentina across the border to Uruguay after a large-scale hold-up that turns bloody. Angel is hurt and the three must lay low until Angel recovers. Nene and Angel are known to everyone they know as "the twins" because of their resemblance, but the two are not brothers at all - they are involved in a steamy homosexual relationship. To get back to Argentina, the group must first wait for Fontana, the brains behind the robbery, to arrange for passports. Anxious from hiding, Cuervo decides to break curfew and go party. After Nene and Angel also decide to take off, Nene meets a prostitute named Giselle and Angel ends up getting in a fight. The group is forced to abandon their refuge and Angel and Nene decide to move in with Giselle. However, the sexual attraction between Nene and Angel burns too strongly and when Nene gets hostile with Giselle and kicks her out, she goes straight to the police to snitch on the group. It's not long before police are surrounding the building and the fate of Nene and Angel appears to be sealed.

Amores Perros

Year: 2000 - Country: Mexico - Director: Alejandro González Iñárritu - Genre: Drama / Thriller - Runtime: 153 min - Actors: Gael García Bernal, Emilio Echevarría, álvaro Guerrero, Goya Toledo - Rating: USA:R for violence/gore, language and sexuality - Format: DVD - Acquired: June 2005 Amores Perros roughly translates to "Love's a bitch," and it's an apt summation of this remarkable film's exploration of passion, loss, and the fragility of our lives. In telling three stories connected by one traumatic incident, Mexican director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu uses an intricate screenplay by novelist Guillermo Arriaga to make three movies in close orbit, expressing the notion that we are defined by what we lose--from our loves to our family, our innocence, or even our lives. These interwoven tales--about a young man in love with his brother's pregnant wife, a perfume spokeswoman and her married lover, and a scruffy vagrant who sidelines as a paid killer--are united by a devastating car crash that provides the film's narrative nexus, and by the many dogs that the characters own or care for. There is graphic violence, prompting a disclaimer that controversial dog-fight scenes were harmless and carefully supervised, but what emerges from Amores Perros is a uniquely conceptual portrait of people whom we come to know through their relationship with dogs. The film is simultaneously bleak, cynical, insightful, and compassionate, with layers of meaning that are sure to reward multiple viewings. --Jeff Shannon

Mar adentro (The Sea Inside)

Year: 2004 - Country: Spain - Director: Alejandro Amenábar - Genre: Biography, drama - Runtime: 125 min - Actors: Javier Bardem, Belén Rueda - Rating: PG-13 for intense depiction of mature thematic material - Format: DVD - Acquired: June 2005 Winner of the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film of 2004, The Sea Inside is a life-affirming film about a man who wishes to die. That may seem like a massive contradiction, but in the hands of director Alejandro Amenábar (Open Your Eyes, The Others) and actor Javier Bardem (Before Night Falls), this fact-based Spanish drama concerns the final days of Ramón Sampedro, the quadriplegic poet who waged a controversial campaign for his right to die. He was denied this right for 30 years, and ultimately arranged for his own assisted suicide, but this remarkable film--and Bardem's keenly intelligent performance--examines the hotly-debated issue of assisted suicide with admirable depth and humanity, just as Sampedro did until his death in 1998. For Sampedro, death was preferable to severe paralysis (he even refused to use a wheelchair), but the film does not suggest a "disposable" attitude toward disability. Instead, it's a thoughtful meditation on life and love as gifts to be cherished, and a challenging drama that begs each viewer to examine their own personal beliefs about what makes life worth living. You may not agree with Sampedro and his ultimate denial of life, but The Sea Inside will urge you to ponder how you would react under similar circumstances, and that makes it a profoundly meaningful film. --Jeff Shannon

Por la Libre (Dust to Dust)

Year: 2000 - Country: México - Director: Juan Carlos de Llaca - Genre: Comedy - Runtime: 96 min - Actors: Osvaldo Benavides (Rocco), Rodrigo Cachero (Rodrigo), Ana de la Reguera (Maria), etc. - Rating: Rated R for language, some sexuality and drug use (MPAA) - Format: DVD - Acquired: June 2005

This bittersweet comedy from Mexico explores one family's conflicted history. Rodrigo and Rocco are cousins who must put aside their own personal differences if they want to keep their family together. After the passing of their beloved grandfather, the family has become embroiled in a battle over his inheritance. Hopping in a Mercedes with their grandfather's ashes, Rodrigo and Rocco head for Acapulco with the intentions of settling everyone's problems once and for all.

Miel Para Oshún (Honey for Oshun)

Year: - Country: - Director: Humberto Solás - Genre: Comedy/Drama - Runtime: USA:123 min - Actors: Jorge Perugorria (Roberto), Isabel Santos (Pilar) - Rating: R for language (?!) (MPAA)- Format: DVD - Acquired: June 2005 Jorge Perugorria (Strawberry and Chocolate) stars as Roberto, who with the help of an eccentric cab driver, embarks on a wild road trip through Cuba to search for the mother he thought had abandoned him as a child. From Award-winning filmmaker Humberto Solas, Honey For Oshun is a compelling and funny story filled with unexpected detours, wrong turns, near deadends, and plenty of broken-down cars.

La deuda interna (The Debt / Veronico Cruz)

Year: 1987 - Country: UK / Argentina - Director: Miguel Pereira - Genre: Drama - Runtime: 96 min - Actors: Leopoldo Aban, Juan José Camero, Guillermo Delgado - Rating: Argentina:13 / USA:Unrated - Format: DVD - Acquired: Fall 2004.

"The story of the life of an Indian boy, Veronico Cruz, from his birth in one of the most remote parts of Argentina, until his death in the far-off south Atlantic during the Falklands/Malvinas War."

Cría cuervos (Raise Ravens)

Year: 1976 - Country: Spain - Director: Carlos Saura - Genre: Drama / Crime / Mystery / Thriller - Runtime: 107 min - Actors: Geraldine Chaplin, Mónica Randall, Florinda Chico, etc. - Rating: Argentina:18 - Format: DVD - Acquired: Fall 2004.

"After doing several films with screenwriter Rafael Azcona, GARDEN OF DELIGHTS, MY COUSIN AGNELICA, Carlos Saura made CRIA! from his own script. He continued using actors in dual roles, allowing for easily shifting time frames and multiple points of view. In a dreamy opening scene, Ana (Ana Torrent), a wide-eyed child of about ten, comes down the stairs and sees a half-dressed woman run from her father's room. She quietly and without emotion goes into the room where her father lies dead on the bed and removes a half-full glass of milk. In the kitchen, as she washes out the glass, her mother (Geraldine Chaplin) enters and scolds her for being up so late. But her Mother, we learn later, died earlier, and Ana blamed her father for it and put poison in his milk. When Ana is alone her mother appears to her again, but this time she looks right in the camera and explains that she's Ana, now age 29. Some of what came before was a flashback from her adult perspective. With Chaplin playing both parts, the film shifts between the story of Ana and her mother, and Ana's life as an adult, until what actually happened the night her father died is completely revealed. CRIA! is the most complex and ambitious of the many films that Saura and Chaplin made together." Rotten Tomatoes (IMDb)

Doña Herlinda y su hijo (Dona Herlinda and Her Son)

Year: 1985 - Country: Mexico - Director: Jaime Humberto Hermosillo - Genre: Comedy / Drama / Romance - Runtime: 90 min - Cast: Guillermina Alba, Guadalupe Del Toro, Letícia Lupercio, etc. - Rating: UK:15 - Format: DVD - Acquired: Fall 2004.

"Rodolfo (Trevino) is a young bachelor doctor who has a love affair with a younger music student, Ramon (Meza). When Rodolfo's mother begins to urge his son to get married, he quickly asks modern and open-mind Olga (Lupercio) to become his wife. Ramon is heart-broken, but Dona Herlinda (del Toro) has the final solution to make everybody happy: She asks Ramon to live with her, near by Rodolfo and Olga. Everybody together forever." IMDb

El espinazo del diablo (The Devil's Backbone)

Year: : 2001 - Country: Spain / Mexico - Genre: Drama / Crime / Mystery / Fantasy - Runtime: 106 min - Director: Guillermo del Toro - Cast: Eduardo Noriega, Marisa Paredes, Federico Luppi, etc. - Rating: USA:R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Fall 2004.

"It is 1939, the end of three years of bloody civil war in Spain, and General Franco's right-wing Nationalists are poised to defeat the left-wing Republican forces. A ten-year-old boy named Carlos (Fernando Tielve), the son of a fallen Republican war hero, is left by his tutor in an orphanage in the middle of nowhere. The orphanage is run by a curt but considerate headmistress named Carmen (Marisa Paredes) and a kindly Professor Casares, both of whom are sympathetic to the doomed Republican cause. Despite their concern for him, and his gradual triumph over the usual schoolhouse bully, Carlos never feels completely comfortable in his new environment. First of all, there was that initial encounter with the orphanage's nasty caretaker, Jacinto, who reacts even more violently when anyone is caught looking around a particular storage room the one with the deep well. Second, and more inexplicable, is the presence of a ghost, one of the former occupants of the orphanage named Santi. Not long after Carlos' arrival, Santi latches onto Carlos, badgering him incessantly at night and gloomily intoning, "Many of you will die." As if that wasn't enough to keep the orphanage's occupants in an unrelenting state of terror, there's the un-exploded bomb that dominates the orphanage's courtyard, still ticking away; With the orphanage left defenseless by its isolation, and the swift progression of Franco's troops, the ghost's prediction seems depressingly accurate. Nevertheless, with every step of the plot, it becomes apparent that the ghost's predictions as to who (or what) will die, the real source of danger and even the definition of death itself may be more ambiguous than first thought." IMDb

Nueve reinas (aka Nine Queens)

Year: 2000 - Country: Argentina - Genre: Crime / Drama / Mystery - Runtime: 114 min - Director: Fabián Bielinsky - Cast: Gastón Pauls, Ricardo Darín, Leticia Brédice, Tomás Fonzi, etc. - Rating: MPAA: Rated R for language - Format: DVD - Acquired: Fall 2004.

Early one morning, Marcos observes Juan successfully pulling off a bill-changing scam on a cashier, and then getting caught as he attempts to pull the same trick on the next shift. Marcos steps in, claiming to be a policeman, and drags Juan out of the store. Once they are back on the street, Marcos reveals himself to be a fellow swindler with a game of much higher stakes in mind, and he invites Juan to be his partner in crime. A once-in-a-lifetime scheme seemingly falls into their laps - an old-time con man enlists them to sell a forged set of extremely valuable rare stamps, The Nine Queens. The tricky negotiations that ensue bring into the picture a cast of suspicious characters, including Marcos' sister Valeria, their younger brother Federico and a slew of thieves, conmen and pickpockets. As the deceptions mount, it becomes more and more difficult to figure out who is conning whom. IMDb (Amazon)

Lucía y el sexo (aka Sex and Lucia)

Year: 2001 - Country: Spain - Genre: Drama / Romance - Runtime: 128 min - Director: Julio Medem - Cast: Paz Vega, Tristán Ulloa, Najwa Nimri, etc. - Rating: MPAA: Rated R for strong sexual content and language. (edited version) - Format: DVD - Acquired: Fall 2004.

Lucía is a young waitress in a restaurant in the centre of Madrid. After the loss of her long-time boyfriend, a writer, she seeks refuge on a quiet, secluded Mediterranean island. There, bathed in an atmosphere of fresh air and dazzling sun, Lucía begins to discover the dark corners of her past relationship, as if they were forbidden passages of a novel which the author now, from afar, allows her to read. IMDb Amazon (unrated)

Solas (aka Alone)

Year: 1999 - Country: Spain - Genre: Drama - Runtime: 101 min - Director: Benito Zambrano - Cast: María Galiana, Ana Fernández, Carlos álvarez-Novoa, etc. - Rating: MPAA: Rated R for language and sexual content - Format: DVD - Acquired: Fall 2004.

Maria, whose parents live in the country, cannot stand her father's authoritarian ways and moves to the city. She finds a job as a cleaner and tries to survive in a wretched apartment in the shabby part of a big city. She is pregnant, and the fact that her boyfriend has abandoned her does not help matters. When her father goes to the hospital for an operation, her mother comes to stay with her. Her neighbor, an old recluse whose only friend is his dog, begins to come out of his shell and these three lost souls try to give each other the strength to start over. IMDb, Amazon

Los Olvidados (aka Young and the Damned, The)

Year: 1950 - Country: México - Genre: Drama - Runtime: 85 min / USA:80 min - Director: Luis Buñuel - Cast: Alfonso Mejía, Estela Inda, Miguel Inclán, etc. - Rating: Sweden:15 / Argentina:16 - Format: VHS - Acquired: Fall 2004.

A group of juvenile delinquents live a violent and crime-filled life in the festering slums of Mexico City, and the morals of young Pedro are gradually corrupted and destroyed by the others... IMDb

La Flor de mi secreto

Year: 1995 - Country: Spain - Genre: Drama - Runtime: 103 min - Director: Pedro Almodóvar - Cast: Marisa Paredes, Juan Echanove, Carmen Elías, etc. - Rating: Spain:13, USA:R - Format: VHS - Acquired: Fall 2004.

Spoiled and self-centred Leo is not the most likeable of women; her sister Rosa (the wonderful Rossy de Palma) who looks after their aged mother probably deserves more of our sympathy. But the nicest people don't necessarily provide the most interesting stories; and Almodovar isn't trying to enlist our pity, but our understanding. If, according to the oft-quoted screenplay dictum, character is defined by action, then what he shows us is a courageous character who overcomes her self-pity, and takes up life and love again. Leo comes to terms with her loss, in much the same way as the mother in film's opening scene finally accepts that her son is dead. But that episode turns out to be a repeatable training session for doctors, so perhaps Almodovar is warning Leo that loss of love can take place more than once, or possibly he is suggesting to the audience that they regard Leo's story as a training session for life. IMDb

Talk to Her (Hable con Ella)
SSU Library CIRC DESK Video PN 1997.H2213 2003

Year: 2002 - Country: Spain - Genre: - Runtime: - Director: Pedro Almodóvar - Cast: Javier Cámara, Darío Grandinetti - Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Spring 2004. Writer-director Pedro Almodóvar makes another masterpiece with Talk to Her, his first film since the wonderful All About My Mother. Marco (Dario Grandinetti) is in love with Lydia (Rosario Flores), a female bullfighter who is gored by a bull and sent into a coma. In the hospital, Marco crosses paths with Benigno (Javier Camara), a male nurse who looks after another coma patient, a young dancer named Alicia (Leonor Watling). From Benigno's gentle attentiveness to Alicia, Marco learns to take care of Lydia... but from there, the story goes in directions that deftly manage to be sad, hopeful, funny, and creepy, sometimes at the same time. The rich human empathy of Almodóvar's recent films is passionate, heartbreaking, intoxicating--there aren't enough adjectives to praise this remarkable filmmaker, who is at the height of his powers. Talk to Her is superb, with outstanding performances from all involved. --Bret Fetzer

At Yahoo Movies

The Son of the Bride

Year: 2002 - Country: Spain - Genre: Comedy, Drama, Foreign, Romance - Runtime: 124 mins. - Director: Juan Jose Campanella - Cast: Ricardo Darin, Héctor Alterio, Norma Aleandro, Eduardo Blanco, Natalia Verbeke - Rating: MPAA R - Format: DVD

Synopsis: "At age 42, Rafael Belvedere is having a crisis. He's overwhelmed by his responsibilities and just isn't having any fun. He has spent most of his life frantically trying to run the restaurant his father Nino founded. He has achieved success, but continues to live in the old man's shadow. He rarely visits his aging mother Nora. His ex-wife is bitter towards him because he doesn't spend enough time with their daughter. And finally, Rafael is too self-involved to make a commitment to his girlfriend Nati. Just when Rafael feels most alone, a series of unexpected events lead him to reevaluate his life. A minor heart attack forces him to slow down and a reunion with Juan Carlos, a childhood friend, helps Rafael to reconstruct his past and look at the present in new ways. Most importantly, when his father makes the decision to fulfill his mother's dream of getting married in a church, it gives Rafael a task to focus on, bringing the family together to create a new memory they can share. "

Salon Review

SSU Library CIRC DESK Video PN 1997 .F74 2003 Disc 1
SSU Library CIRC DESK Video PN 1997 .F74 2003 Disc 2

Year: - Country: - Genre: - Runtime: - Director: Julie Taymor - Cast: Salma Hayek, Jay Polstein - Rating: - Format: VHS Salma Hayek makes up for many bad movies with her fierce performance in this sumptuous film. Hayek plays the Mexican surrealist painter Frida Kahlo, whose tempestuous life with her unfaithful husband, muralist Diego Rivera (Alfred Molina), drives the story of Frida. Maverick director Julie Taymor (Titus, the Broadway stage production of The Lion King) pulls out a wealth of gorgeous visuals to capture everything from the horrific bus accident that damaged Kahlo's spine to her and Rivera's trip to New York City, where Rivera's political leanings ruptured a commission from the Rockefeller family. Though the script spends too much time telling us how great Frida's painting is (rather than trusting in the power of the images themselves), Taymor's dynamic energy and Kahlo's forceful personality give Frida genuine emotional impact. The superb cast includes Roger Rees, Valeria Golino, Ashley Judd, Geoffrey Rush, Antonio Banderas, and Edward Norton. --Bret Fetzer

Te doy mis ojos

Year: 2003 - Country: España - Genre: Drama - Romántica - Runtime: 106 minutos - Director: Iciar Bollaín - Cast: Laia Marull, Luis Tosar, Candela Peña, Rosa María Sardá, Sergi Calleja, Kity Mánver, Nicolás Fernández Luna - Rating: - Format: VHS

"Una noche de invierno, una mujer, Pilar (Laia Marull), sale huyendo de su casa. Lleva consigo apenas cua-tro cosas y a su hijo, Juan (Nicolás Fernández Luna). Antonio (Luis Tosar) no tarda en ir a buscarla. Pilar es su sol, dice, y además, “le ha dado sus ojos”... A lo largo de la película, los personajes irán reescribiendo ese libro de familia en el que está escrito quién es quién y qué se espera que haga pero en el que todos los conceptos están equivocados y donde dice hogar se lee infierno, donde dice amor hay dolor y quien promete protección produce terror." (Source)

"Te doy mis ojos", tercer largometraje de Bollain, también actriz que participó, por ejemplo en "Tierra y Libertad" del británico Ken Loach, aborda la difícil realidad de las mujeres maltratadas desde una perspectiva sorprendente y novedosa, tras escribir el guión, como una extensión de "Amores que matan" junto a Alicia Luna.
Tratada de forma bastante púdica, la película no muestra ni una sola escena de violencia. Presenta lo que resulta de ella y el deterioro que va provocando en una relación, en este caso de pareja. Pilar (Laia Marull) y Antonio (Luis Tosar) son la pareja en cuestión. Consciente de que maltrata a su mujer, Antonio decide hacer terapia, pero ello no impide que siga golpeándola.
Pilar, quizá como ejemplo de lo que le sucede en la realidad a miles de mujeres en España no se atreve a denunciarlo. Pese a que Bollaín afirmó que no pretendía convertir su película "en una denuncia", el drama de las mujeres maltratadas es casi cotidiano en España, donde en lo que va de 2003 más de 50 mujeres murieron a manos de sus compañeros.
Iciar Bollaín afirma que "después de "Flores de otro mundo" quería hacer una película más concentrada, menos coral, y quizá por ello más descarnada e intensa." Y se pregunta "¿Porqué una mujer aguanta una media de 10 años junto a un hombre que la machaca? ¿Por qué no se va? ¿Por qué no sólo no se va sino que incluso algunas aseguran seguir enamoradas? Las razones de dependencia económica no explican el hecho de que una de cada 4 mujeres en Europa y Estados Unidos aseguren haber vivido una relación de violencia en su vida."" (Source)

La lengua de las mariposas (Butterfly)

Year: 1999 - Country: Spain - Director: José Luis Cuerda - Genre: - Runtime: - Actors: - Rating: R - Format: DVD - Acquired: Sep 2008 (replaced lost copy)

From the Back Cover: Acclaimed by critics and featuring legendary star Fernando Fernan Gomez (All About My Mother), Butterfly is a heartwarming tale about a young boy growing up in a small Spanish town. Moncho is timid and fearful as he starts school for the first time. But with the nuturing guidance of his kind and devoted teacher, Don Gregorio (Fernan Gomez), a world of possibilities begins to open up for young Moncho. As the school year comes to a close, however, civil war begins sweeping across the country, forcing the boy's family and community to choose between the fight for freedom and the threat of persecution! An amazing story of family and friendship during a time of extreme conflict--you're sure to enjoy this magical motion picture. Check it out at Check it out at the Internet Movie Database.

Todo sobre mi madre (All about my mother)

Year/Año: 2000 - Country/País: Spain - Genre/Género: - Duration/Duración: - Director/Dirección: Pedro Almodóvar - Actors/Actores: Cecilia Roth, Marisa Paredes - Rating: R - Format/Formato: DVD

From After her son is killed in an accident, Manuela (Cecilia Roth) leaves Madrid for her old haunts in Barcelona. She reconnects with an old friend, a pre-op transsexual prostitute named La Agrado (Antonia San Juan), who introduces her to Rosa (Penélope Cruz), a young nun who turns out to be pregnant. Meanwhile, Manuela becomes a personal assistant for Huma Rojo (Marisa Paredes), an actress currently playing Blanche DuBois in a production of A Streetcar Named Desire. All About My Mother traces the delicate web of friendship and loss that binds these women together. The movie is dedicated to the actresses of the world, so it's not surprising that all the performances are superb. Roth in particular anchors All About My Mother with compassion and generosity. But fans of writer-director Pedro Almodóvar needn't fret--as always, Almodóvar's work undermines conventional notions of sexual identity and embraces all human possibilities with bright colors and melodramatic plotting. However, All About My Mother approaches its twists and turns with a broader emotional scope than most of Almodóvar's work; even the more extravagant aspects of the story are presented quietly, to allow the sadness of life to be as present as the irrepressible vitality of the characters. Almodóvar embraces pettiness, jealousy, and grief as much as kindness, courage, and outrageousness, and the movie is the richer for it. --Bret Fetzer. Check it out at Check it out at the Internet Movie Database.

Goya in Bordeau

Year/Año: 1999 - Country/País: - Genre/Género: - Duration/Duración: - Director/Dirección: Carlos Saura - Actors/Actores: - Rating: R - Format/Formato: DVD

Brilliant painter Francisco de Goya, considered by many to be the most important artist of the modern era, reflects on his turbulent career and tempestuous relationships during the decline of Spain and a bloody war of independence, while living out his final days in exile. Check it out at Check it out at the Internet Movie Database.

El abuelo (The grandfather)

Year/Año: 1998 - Country/País: Spain - Genre/Género: - Duration/Duración: 151 min - Director/Dirección: José Luis García - Actors/Actores: - Rating: MPAA: Rated PG for thematic elements and language - Format/Formato: DVD

Check it out at Check it out at the Internet Movie Database.

El crimen del padre Amaro (The crime of Father Amaro)

Year/Año: - Country/País: Mexico / Spain / Argentina / France - Genre/Género: - Duration/Duración: 118 min - Director/Dirección: Carlos Carrera - Actors/Actores: - Rating: MPAA: Rated R for sexuality, language and some disturbing images - Format/Formato: DVD

From This controversial film follows a handsome young priest, Padre Amaro (played by Gael Garcia Bernal from Y Tu Mamá También and Amores Perros), who arrives in a small town and finds himself surrounded by hypocrisy and corruption--and also finds himself tempted by a beautiful young woman who confesses that when she "touches herself," she thinks of Jesus. What makes El Crimen del Padre Amaro (The Crime of Father Amaro) particularly effective is that Amaro is no innocent--he skillfully forces a newspaper publisher to retract a scandalous story about the Church and is willing to take extreme steps to preserve his career. Some of the movie's harsher digs at the Catholic Church have provoked accusations of prejudice; but though Padre Amaro portrays a world in which no one's hands are clean, it also finds redeeming qualities in every character. A complex, completely engrossing movie. --Bret Fetzer Check it out at Check it out at the Internet Movie Database.

Ay, Carmela

Year/Año: 1991 - Country/País: Spain / Italy - Genre/Género: - Duration/Duración: 102 min - Director/Dirección: Carlos Saura - Actors/Actores: Carmen Maura, Andrés Pajares - Rating/Clasificación: PG-13 - Format/Formato: VHS

From the back cover: "In Spain, 1938, the country is torn apart by Civil War between the Republicans and Franco¹s fascist forces. Carmela and Paulino are Republicans and travelling entertainers who innocently make a wrong turn one night and end up prisoners of the Fascists. They are about to be executed along with a town full of Republican prisoners, when they are discovered by a young heater-loving Lieutenant. He persuades the army to let them stage a show to entetain the troops, and Paulino agrees in order to save his and Carmela¹s life but she is unaware of his betrayal. Paulino rewrites their cabaret to suit the conquering army, and all is made ready for the big night. But the show that could save their lives becomes a curtain-raiser to disaster when Carmela discovers that she¹s been tricked and is about to beteray her country. Carmela believes in giving everything for a good show -- willing even to give her life." Check it out at Check it out at the Internet Movie Database.

Retrato de Teresa (Portrait of Teresa)

Year/Año: 1979 - Country/País: Cuba - Genre/Género: - Duration/Duración: 103 minutes - Director/Dirección: - Actors/Actores: - Rating/Clasificación: - Format/Formato: VHS

From Internet Movie Database: "*WARNING: CERTAIN SCENES ANALYZED WHICH MAY REVEAL PLOT* A classic Cuban film which portrays the problems of Cuban women under the revolution. Teresa, a factory worker, has three sons and a traditional, rather suspicious husband. She takes on the job of cultural secretary at the factory despite misgivings that she won't be able to handle the many demands on her time. The new responsibilities increase her husband's jealousy and make her feel increasingly inadequate. Teresa throws her husband out after an ugly scene, and is left shouldering the day-to-day burdens of life under the revolution. Her husband is suddenly promoted to a technical position as a TV repair man in a far away city and he comes crawling back in attempts to get his wife and children to move with him. The double standard is evident when he commits to another woman and defends his position because "he is a man". At this point Teresa begins to question her cultural identity by asking, "what if I had an affair?" and he denies that it would be similar, so she realizes that he in fact has not changed. We in fact do not know if Teresa actually had an affair, that is not at stake here, it is the hypothetical possibility. Not a bad little film from Cuba considering that the budget was so low they could barely afford film and had to beg on the street for sandwiches for the crew and cast. Look for an 7 year old Ricky Martin as the role of the oldest brother. This is a straight, social-realist perspective and it is filmed in that manner, no cinematic angles or de-constructed themes, so it reads like a play and may bore the common movie goer but it is enjoyable. It is clearly outdated by today's standard but the human element is timeless and that is what holds it together. The actors are all capable and even show a certain amount of wonderful expression in certain scenes. There's a certain despondency at looking at Cuba in this time. The streets are dirty, crowded, the houses are barren and empty, which radiate with the sordid lives around them. Obviously the "revolution" is a flaw and failure, the director intended to make Teresa's final liberation at the end of the film solely based on individual merit. Nominated at the Moscow International Film Festival for two awards, it won only one, the Golden Prize for Best Actress Daisy Granados. Casting the obvious communist proselytizing aside, the award was well deserved. " Check it out at Check it out at the Internet Movie Database

Como agua para chocolate (Like Water for Chocolate)

Año: 1992 - País: Mexico - Género: Drama / Romance - Duración: 123 min - Dirección: Alfonso Arau - Actores: Marco Leonardi, Lumi Cavazos - Rating/Clasificación: R - Formato: DVD

Sinopsis: "Based on the best-selling novel by Laura Esquival, this internationally popular romantic fable from Mexico centers on a young woman who discovers that her cooking has magical effects. The tale's heroine, Tita, is the youngest of three daughters in a traditional Mexican family. Bound by tradition to remain unmarried while caring for her aging mother, Tita nevertheless falls in love with a handsome young man named Pedro. Pedro returns her affection, but he cannot overcome her family's disapproval, and he instead marries Tita's elder sister. The lovestruck young woman is brutally disappointed, and her sadness has such force that it infects her cooking: all who eat it her feel her heartbreak with the same intensity. This newly discovered power continues to manifest itself after the wedding, as Tita and Pedro, overcome by their denied love, embark on a secret affair. Director Alfonso Arau, Esquival's husband at the time, presents the acts of love and cooking with the same glossy, sensual sheen. Indeed, despite occasional digressions into a magical realist tone, the film often takes on the gloss of Hollywood romance. This combination of traditional melodrama and exotic fairy tale proved extremely popular with audiences, particularly in the United States, where it became one of the highest grossing foreign language films at the time. Judd Blaise - From All Movie Guide. Check it out at Check it out at the Internet Movie Database.

Todos somos estrellas (We're All Stars)

Todos somos estrellas (We're All Stars)

Año: 1994 - País: Perú - Género: Comedia - Duración: 87 minutos - Dirección: Luis Felipe Degregori - Actores: Milena Alva, Mariella Balbi, Elide Brero- Formato: VHS

Sinopsis: "This Peruvian comedy takes a poke at Latin living and at the power of the media. The story centers around the troubled family of Carmen Huambachano, who never miss Lima's popular weekly TV series "We Are All Stars." In this show, a typical family is first interviewed and then given the opportunity to win prizes. The Huambachano family is chosen, a TV crew is at the door, and now the family must decide how they are going to present themselves on national television. They rally together and quickly begin repainting and redecorating the house, finding their best clothing, and finally looking for a suitable "husband" for Carmen. Her real husband, a "no good rat" left her years before." ~ Sandra Brennan, All Movie Guide. Check it out at Check it out at the Internet Movie Database. Check it out at All Movie Guide.

Mujeres al Borde de un Ataque de Nervios (Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown)

Año: 1988 - País: Spain - Género: - Duración: 90 min - Dirección: Pedro Almodóvar - Actores: Carmen Maura, Antonio Banderas - Rating: Spain:13 / USA:R - Formato: DVD

Sinopsis: ( essential video) "Pedro Almodovar broke into the art-house mainstream with this wild, manic comedy about a gaggle of women and their various problems with men, be they married lovers, cheating husbands, fiancés, or terrorists. Almodovar's long-time leading lady, Carmen Maura, stars as an actress (famed for her laundry detergent commercial as the mother of a sloppy serial killer) who's just been dumped by her married lover. In the midst of trying to track him down for a face-to-face confrontation, she crosses paths with her lover's son (Antonio Banderas), his unbalanced wife (Julieta Serrano), and his new girlfriend (Kiti Manver). Adding more fuel to the fire is the hapless friend (Maria Barranco) who got involved with a Shiite terrorist and is now being hunted by the police. Almodovar, a master of farcical screwball comedy, manages to keep all these balls in the air in dizzy, hilarious style without once losing his momentum. Chock full of the director's over-the-top stylization, in terms of both story and sets, the film is a hilarious yet heartfelt marriage of kitsch and drama, verging on parody but never going entirely over the top. Maura is absolutely breathtaking as the unhinged lover, dispensing wise advice to others while trying to keep a semblance of sanity, and the supporting cast is quintessential Almodovar, including a brief but memorable turn by Banderas in what could have been a bland, go-nowhere role. Nominated for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar in 1989." --Mark Englehart. Check it out at Check it out at the Internet Movie Database.

Técnicas de duelo (Details of a Duel: A Question of Honor)

Año: 1988 - País: Colombia - Género: Ficción - Duración: Sergio Cabrera - Dirección: Fernando Pérez - Formato: VHS

Sinopsis: A finales de los años cincuenta, un pueblo anónimo de los Andes, ve alterada su calma por el inminente duelo a muerte entre el maestro y el carnicero, quienes eran amigos entrañables y compañeros de luchas políticas. El alcalde aprove

La vida es silbar (Life is to Whistle)

Año: 1999 - País: Cuba - Género: Comedia - Duración: Dirección: Fernando Pérez - Formato: DVD Where's Cuba? Fernando Perez's colorful tapestry of fantasy and street realism is a troubled love letter to Cuba. Fisherman and musician Luis Alberto Garcia is an abandoned child searching for his mother (aptly named Cuba) in an allegorical journey. He's just one of Perez's orphans, along with a social worker who faints every time she hears the word "sex" and a passionate ballet dancer who promises God her celibacy if she can get the role of Giselle and then falls for her new partner. The metaphorical tales have a tendency to become so abstract they almost dissolve, but the heady sex and throbbing music power it through to the imaginative and sweet climax with magic and color and earthy eroticism. If he never gets an answer to his question, his lush portrait at least sketches his mother country's identity crisis. --Sean Axmaker


Año: 1997 - País: Cuba - Género: Comedia - Duración: Dirección: Tomás Gutiérrez Alea, Juan Carlos Tabío - Formato: DVD From the Cuban directors of Strawberry and Chocolate (Tomás Gutiérrez and Juan Carlos Tabio) comes a poignant romantic comedy with satiric bite. Yoyita is a famous singer who returns to the town of Guantanamo for a celebration in her honor. Reunited with her girlhood lover Candido after 50 years, she dies in his arms from overstimulation. The farce of returning her body to Havana for proper burial provides the vehicle for an easygoing yet incisive overview of contemporary Cuba and a lighthearted admonishment to live for the moment. Yoyita's niece Gina, who is a former professor of economics, and her tyrannical husband, who is the official undertaker for the remote province, make up the procession, along with the forlorn Candido. As the cortege makes its way toward the capital, Gina is given a second chance at love with a hunky truck driver while we become privy to the clandestine restaurants, abject road stops, and endless slogans that populate the hitherto underexposed Cuban countryside. --Fionn Meade

Entre Pancho Villa y una mujer desnuda

Año: 1995 - País: México - Género: Comedia - Duración: 90 min. - Dirección: Sabina Berman e Isabelle Tardán - Formato: VHS

Sinopsis: "La relación entre Gina -una moderna y liberal ejecutiva- y Adrián -un periodista e historiador divorciado- tiene dos elementos comunes: Su mutua atracción sexual y su admiración hacia la figura de Pancho Villa. Gina descubre que su relación con Adrián y la de Pancho Villa con sus mujeres son muy similares, por lo que decide presionar a su amante para que asuma una responsabilidad. Adrián huye y regresa, pero Gina planea vengarse de tal manera que ni el mismo Pancho Villa podrá convencerla de lo contrario."

Y Tu Mama Tambien (And Your Mother Too)

DVD / Mexico / Unrated Edition 2001 / Starring: Maribel Verdú, Gael García Bernal, Diego Luna / Director: Alfonso Cuarón

"Plenty of juicy "s" words apply to And Your Mother Too: sexy, sweet, subtle, sad, surprising, superb... and did we say sexy? With enough male and female nudity to qualify as softcore porn--but deserving none of the stigma attached to that label--this vibrant coming-of-age road movie is guaranteed to jumpstart any viewer's libido. Frank treatment of its characters' burgeoning sexuality makes this unrated film a real eye-opener, but it's never prurient or juvenile. Rather, the three-way odyssey of two 17-year-old Mexican boys (Gael García Bernal, Diego Luna) and a 28-year-old Spanish beauty (Maribel Verdú) is energetic and affirmative, while acknowledging that relationships--and sexual adventures--rarely develop without a hitch or two (or three). Filmed in sequence by Alfonso Cuarón (Great Expectations), and shot with invigorating natural style, this refreshing comedy-drama employs an omniscient narrator to reflect upon precious stolen moments, weaving three lives into a memorable tapestry of fun, friendship, and fate." --Jeff Shannon (

Abre los ojos (Open your eyes)

DVD / Spain / 1997 / Alejandro Amenábar

"Set in Madrid, the story defies description, but this much can be revealed: young, handsome Cesar (Eduardo Noriega) is vain, rich, charming, and--following a botched suicide-murder scheme by a jilted lover--horribly disfigured. He'd fallen in love with Sofia (Penélope Cruz) but is now an embittered husk of his former self, stuck in a "psychiatric penitentiary" on a murder charge and hiding behind an expressionless mask. His reality has crumbled, but as the film's agenda is gradually revealed, we realize that there are other factors in play. Exposing that agenda would be a criminal offense against those who haven't seen the film; suffice it to say that Open Your Eyes takes you into the twilight zone and beyond, and does so cleverly enough to prompt Tom Cruise to produce and star in an English-language remake, Vanilla Sky. The 2001 remake, directed by Cameron Crowe, costars Cameron Diaz and Penélope Cruz, who reprises her original role. --Jeff Shannon"


Carlos Saura / 1998 / 1060 / DVD / Spanish, English subtitles / Spain-Argentina, 115 mins.


"A lonely and disillusioned tango dancer sets out to create a staged history of Argentina in the form of a musical dedicated to dance - and no dance is greater in Argentina than the tango. His star is the wife who walked out on him (Cecilia Narova) and for him, if not for her, the torch still burns. Yet he falls in love with a younger dancer in the show (Mia Maestro) and that's a mistake. She is the mistress of one of the show's main backers, a heavy-hitter in every sense. He also includes the recent history of Argentina - the police brutality, the "disappeareds" - and that's another mistake .... Nominated for the Foreign Film Oscar. Vittorio Storaro, the cinemaphotographer, won the Technical Grand Prix at Cannes. Don't worry too much about the plot. Saura doesn't. He celebrates dance here - the most erotically charged of them all, from the ballroom to the bedroom in a few simple steps. Magnificent. Mind you, Geoff Andrew of Time Out absolutely hates it!." (source)

"More than any other contemporary director, Carlos Saura (Carmen, Flamenco) has made the dance film his domain. Here again he demonstrates his masterful ability to capture the beauty of choreography, in a partially autobiographical narrative about a filmmaker trying to create the ultimate tango movie. Vittorio Storaro won deserved honors at Cannes for his dazzling cinematography and Lalo Schifrin contributes a thrilling musical score. "…one of the most purely joyful pieces of cinema in years" (Edward Guthmann, San Francisco Chronicle). Spanish with English subtitles."

Carne trémula (Live Flesh)

Pedro Almodovar / 1998 / VHS / Spain-France / 101 mins. / Spanish, English subtitles

Set in Madrid, Almodovar's seductive, subversive comedy stars Liberto Rabal as Victor, a pizza delivery man obsessed with Elena (Francesca Neri), a beautiful Italian junkie he met and slept with a few days ago. When his aggressive courting is mistaken for rape, cops David (Javier Bardem) and Sancho (Jose Sancho) show up at the scene, Victor's gun accidentally goes off and the younger David is shot and paralyzed. Four years later David is a wheelchair basketball star, now married to Elena. When Victor is released from prison, their destinies begin to cross again. But nothing is what it seems, and only when Victor turns this world upside down do we see the true picture. Spanish with English subtitles.

Sol de Otoño (Autumn Sun)

Eduardo Mignogna / 1996 / DVD / Spanish, English subtitles / Argentina / 103 mins.

A middle-aged, single Jewish woman takes out a personal ad, hoping to find someone to pose as her fiance and reassure her old-fashioned brother that she is well on the way to a happy marriage. The sole respondent, however, turns out not to be Jewish. They decide to pursue the charade anyway and what begins as an arrangement of convenience quickly turns into mutual affection. "One of the most memorable movie romances in several years...a film to both enjoy and treasure" (Michael Wilmington, Chicago Tribune). In Spanish with English subtitles.

Nueba Yol

Angel Muniz / 1995 / VHS / Spanish, English subtitles / Dominican Republic / 105 mins.

"This charming film about disappointment, triumph and the American dream broke all box office records in the Dominican Republic. When Balbuena (Luisito Marti) moves from Santo Domingo to New York ("Nueba Yol" in Dominican slang) hoping to make a fortune, he is in for a harsh disappointment, but finds the inner resources to succeed and find love in this land of crime, betrayal and strict labor laws. "Nueba Yol's well-placed plot and endearing characters provide a solid foundation for the deeper, more thought-provoking issues it raises. The film addresses not only immigration and crime but also the more universal themes of dreams, disappointment and triumph" (Mary Ann Farley, Video Business)."

Cabeza De Vaca

Nicolas Echevarria / Mexico-Spain / VHS / 109 mins. / Spanish, English subtitles

"A visually spellbinding biography of the Spanish explorer Nunez Cabeza de Vaca, the sole survivor of a 16th-century Spanish shipwreck off the coast of Florida. Cabeza de Vaca discovers the Iguase, a traditional Indian tribe, which allows Cabeza into their tribe. Over the next eight years, he learns about their mysterious culture and becomes a leader of the group. But his former identity catches up with him when a team of Spanish conquistadors return to colonize the Indians. "Bold and imaginative, the film has ambition, freshness, imagination, mystery and exhilarating reach. It has greatness in it" (Jay Carr, Boston Globe). With Juan Diego, Daniel Gimenez Cacho and Roberto Sosa."

Mariposas en el andamio (Butterflies on the Scaffold)

Margret Gilpin, Luis Felipe Bernaza / 1995 / VHS / Spanish, English subtitles / Cuba / 74 mins.

"A rare documentary of a Havana suburb transformed by a group of beautiful and charismatic drag queens. The first and only "dragumentary" ever produced in Castro's Cuba, the journey moves from on-stage action and backstage preparation to insightful interviews with community leaders, the performers and their families."

La Historia Oficial / The Official Story [replacement copy]

Luis Puenzo / 1985 / DVD / Spanish, English subtitles / Argentina; 112 mins.

Winner of the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 1985, this powerful Argentinean feature is the true story of a comfortable middle-class couple and their adopted daughter. As the film progresses, the couple gradually begin to suspect that their daughter may be one of the many Argentinean children separated from their parents as they are detained or tortured and given away. The wife's journey of self-discovery reveals the horrors of the military dictatorship in Argentina. Directed by Luis Puenzo. With great performances from Hector Alterio and Norma Aleandro. Spanish with English subtitles.

Fresa y chocolate / Strawberry & Chocolate –

Tomas Gutierrez Alea / 1994 / VHS / Spanish, English subtitles / Cuba / 104 minutes.

"A sensation from Cuba in which a chance encounter over ice cream between a middle-aged gay man and a young, fervent believer in contemporary Cuban Marxism sets the stage for a funny but serious film about difference and acceptance. Their friendship develops despite official intolerance of homosexuality and it soon withstands that short-sighted policy. This film broke box office attendance records in Cuba and achieved world-wide acclaim. Spanish with English subtitles."

Yo, la peor de todas / I, the Worst of All

Maria-Luisa Bemberg / 1993 / VHS / Spanish, English subtitles / Argentina / 100 mins

"Based on the book Traps of Faith by Nobel Prize winner Octavio Paz, this is the last film completed by Maria Luisa Bemberg (Camilla, I Don't Want to Talk About It) before her death in 1995. The film tells the story of real-life Mexican poet and writer Sister Juana Ines de la Cruz (Assumpta Serna, Matador), a target of the Spanish Inquisition, and her passionate relationship with a Viceroy's wife (Dominique Sanda, The Conformist), who protects the nun so that she may continue her work. As the Sister's status begins to grow and she is visited in Mexico City by such intellectuals as Siguenza y Gongora as well as nobility from all over the world, the Church attempts to silence the nun. Considered radical for her time, Sister Juana is now recognized as one of Mexico's greatest poets and the first published feminist of the American continent. Spanish with English subtitles."

Flamenco Women

Mike Figgis / 1998 / VHS / USA / 52 mins.

Its combination of grace and intensity has made the flamenco one of the world's most popular dances. In this dazzling documentary, director Mike Figgis (Leaving Las Vegas) turns his camera's eye on the exquisite physical expression of the women who help bring alive this most sensuous of all dances.

Baton Rouge

Rafael Moleon / 1988 / VHS

Antonio Banderas, Victoria Abril and Carmen Maura star in this sexy thriller loaded with unexpected treachery and passion. Banderas is a gigolo who joins forces with a psychologist to frame a woman for murder. Their victim is experiencing terrible nightmares but she is not so unbalanced as to make the perfect fall gal. Spanish with English subtitles.
Spain, 90 mins.

Belle Epoque

Fernando Trueba / 1992 / VHS / Spain, 109 mins.

"This film won an Oscar as the Best Foreign Language Film in 1994. In this charming romantic comedy, a handsome young soldier flees the Spanish Revolution only to inspire his own sexual revolution. Finding succor in the house of an artist who has four daughters, he proceeds to seduce them all, or is it the other way around? Spanish with English subtitles."


Eloy de la Iglesia / VHS / 1980, 117 min / Spain / 117 mins. / Spanish with English subtitles

"From the director of El Diputado, the story of three friends and their transition into adulthood. A crisis comes about when one of the friends becomes pregnant, and the youths resort to street hustling to raise the funds to solve the problem."

Times to Come

Gustavo Mosquera / VHS / Argentina / Spanish with English subtitles

Reminiscent of Clockwork Orange and an Argentine Blade Runner, this tense thriller was awarded three prestigious ACE awards--Best Director, Best Actor (Hugo Soto) and Best Supporting Actor (Charly Garcia). A jaded cop and an idealistic vigilante join forces in a future city designed to create aggression, alienation and political instability.


Fernando Colomo / 1983 /VHS / Spain / 90 mins.

"Fernando Colombo's unconventional drama about cultural dislocation. The film details the comical day-to-day activities of a resettled Spanish photographer, Gustavo (Antonio Resines), as he attempts to establish his reputation and earn a living in New York. The film has a documentary-style naturalism as Gustavo endures small and private struggles heightened by his unfamiliarity with the language through his determination for self-sufficiency and respect. With Beatriz Perez-Porro, Patricia Cisarano and Jaime Nos. Spanish with English subtitles."

Boca a Boca (Mouth to Mouth)

Manuel Gomez Pereira / 1995 / VHS / Spain, 97 mins.

A struggling actor takes a job as a phone sex operator to make ends meet, setting in motion a hilariously sexy, madcap adventure. With Almodovar vet Javier Bardem, Josep Maria Flotats and Aitana Sanchez-Gijon. Spanish with English subtitles.

Las Cartas de Alou (Letters from Alou)

Montxo Armendariz / 1990 /VHS / Spain / 100 mins.

Alou is an African immigrant in Spain whose unflagging optimism is unaffected by all the instances of exploitation and discrimination that characterize his new home. This social drama won Best Picture and Best Male Lead at the San Sebastian Film Festival. Spanish, French and Senegalese with English subtitles.

Alou, an African immigrant, works his way to Barcelona, where he is to meet up with friend. While he faces much discrimination and hardship, he is able to continue looking ahead to his destination with excitement and anticipation. Armendariz' film, which is based on stories he heard directly from immigrants in Spain, won best picture at the 1990 San Sebastian film festival.


Year: 1962 - Black & White - Country: - Genre: - Runtime: - Director: Luis Buñuel - Cast: Silvia Pinal, Francisco Rabal - Rating: - Format: VHS

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Spanish-language documentaries

Dying to Live: A Migrant's Journey

Year: 2005 - Country: USA - Director: - Genre: Documentary - Runtime: 33 min. - Format: DVD - Acquired: October 2006

Immigration is a complex issue that is changing the face of cultures worldwide. In the United States, it is often a controversial issue with many social, economic, political and even religious implications. In the midst of the debate, what often gets lost are the human issues at stake.

"Dying to Live" is a profound look at the human face of the immigrant. It explores who these people are, why they leave their homes and what they face in their journey. Drawing on the insights of Pulitzer Prize winning photographers, theologians, Church and congressional leaders, activists, musicians and the immigrants themselves, this film exposes the places of conflict, pain and hope along the US-Mexico border. It is a reflection on the human struggle for a more dignified life and the search to find God in the midst of that struggle.

"Who are these people, and why are they risking their lives to enter the United States?" the narrator of this documentary asks. In seeking to answer that question, the film provides both a look at the human face of the Mexican immigrant, including scenes of the harrowing journey migrants undertake to cross the U.S. border, and a discussion of the social, economic, political and religious issues involved.

The 33-minute film, along with bonus material, was scripted and produced by Father Daniel Groody, CSC, '86, assistant professor of theology at Notre Dame, and his cousin, Bill Groody, who has worked in radio and television production.

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Globe Trekker - Destination Mexico

Year: 2002 - Country: - Director: - Genre: - Runtime: 118 minutes - Actors: - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired:

Mexico is a vast country sharing one border with the United States and the other one with Central America. Traveller Ian Wright visits Baja California, a mostly desert mountainous peninsula off the south west coast of the USA, and the Copper Canyon, home of the modern cowboys and the ancient Tarahumara Indians. Meanwhile Justine Shapiro explores Mexico City, a buzzing capital where modern skyscrapers tower over Indian markets and Spanish churches. Along the way… - Visit the wild border town of Tijuana - Sail close to the grey whales which migrate to the Laguna San Ignacio during the northern winter months - Explore the colonial silver city of Taxco, and the amazing city of Teotihuacan whose mysterious civilisation built the gigantic pyramids of the Sun and the Moon - Get a hot taste for Mexican chilies at La Merced, one of the largest food markets, and sample some of the hundreds of tequila varieties

Globe Trekker - Central America

Year: 2004 - Country: - Director: - Genre: Travel Documentary - Runtime: - Actors: - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired: October 2006

The stretch of land separating North and South America is a diverse assembly of countries and cultures. While hundreds of ruined cities throughout the jungles of Central and Meso-America reveal the secrets of the ancient Maya, the ruins in Nicaragua reveal more recent atrocities. Through this contrast shines some of the most naturally beautiful landscapes in the world. Traveler Justine Shapiro starts her journey in Merida, Mexico, the capital of the Yucatan Peninsula, where she takes in the Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza and Tulum. She then travels south through Belize to Guatemala. Further south Neil Gibson begins his journey in the Costa Rican capital of San Jose traveling through the Monteverde Cloud Forest before ending in turbulent Nicaragua.

Along the way... · Dance the night away in a Merengue club · Witness a bull fiesta in Liberia · Visit a cigar factory in Granada · Swim with dolphins at the idyllic beach resort of Placencia · Rejoice in the Easter celebrations in Antigua - hailed as the most spectacular in Latin America

Globe Trekker - Spain

Year: 2002 - Country: - Director: - Genre: Travel Documentary - Runtime: - Actors: - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired: October 2006

Situated in South Western Europe, Spain is one of the most beautiful and diverse countries in Europe, both in its landscape and its culture. Traveler Shilpa Mehta explores Northern Spain during the Fiesta season, while Christina Chang, goes beyond the tourist hotspots of the Costa del Sol and travels inland to discover the real Southern Spain. Along the way… - Visit the beautiful cities of Barcelona, Madrid, Seville and Grenada - Attend the Pamplona fiesta and its famous running of the bull - Walk the Pilgrim Trail, a religious journey to Santiago de Compostella - Explore Cazorla National Park - Admire the lunar landscape around Tabernas, the spaghetti western territory - Take part in a re-enactment of the battle of the Moors and the Christians at the Alcoy festival

Spanish Literature under Dictatorship: 1940 to 1975

Year: - Language: Spanish - Publisher: Films for the Humanities and Sciences - Genre: Documentary - Runtime: 50 min - Format: VHS - Acquired: Fall 2004.

How did life in post-civil war Spain—a time of uncertainty and oppression—influence the writings of the period? In this program, renowned experts explore the literature of the Franco era through the experiences of Ana María Matute and other writers who chose to stay in Spain after the Nationalist victory in 1939. Dramatic readings include excerpts from Camilo José Cela’s La Colmena, Luis Martín-Santos’s Tiempo de Silencio, Carmen Martín Gaite’s Entre Visillos, Miguel Delibes’ Cinco Horas con Mario, and Gonzalo Torrente Ballester’s Don Juan, as well as from the works of Matute, Jaime Gil de Biedma, and José Angel Valente. Part of the Series The Glories of Spanish Literature. Films for the Humanities and Sciences

The Generation of '27

Year: 2002 - Language: Spanish - Publisher: Films for the Humanities and Sciences - Genre: Documentary - Runtime: 50 min - Format: VHS - Acquired: Fall 2004.

"At the heart of the Generation of ’27 lies experimentation with a host of popular artistic as well as political "isms" including neo-Gongorism, Ultraism, Creationism, Surrealism, socialism, and communism. In this program, renowned experts profile key members of this post-World War I group. Dramatic readings include excerpts from Luis Cernuda’s Donde Habite el Olvido, Rafael Alberti’s "Cita Triste de Charlot," Ramón Gómez de la Serna’s Flor de Greguerías, Pedro Salinas’s La Voz a Ti Debida, and Federico García Lorca’s Romancero Gitano, Bodas de Sangre, Poeta en Nueva York, and "Romance Sonámbulo."" Part of the Series The Glories of Spanish Literature Films for the Humanities and Sciences

Rick Steves Best of Travels in Europe - Spain & Portugal (2001)

Year: - Country: - Director: - Genre: - Runtime: - Actors: - Rating: - Format: DVD

"Join popular PBS personality Rick Steves on a grand tour of Europe, and see 15 countries as only he can show them to you--on enhanced DVD! Get a real feel for the people he meets, and come to a true understanding of treasured local customs. Above all, explore the unfamiliar, discover the unusual, and marvel at fabulous and fabled places in Europe and along the Mediterranean. Visit Madrid and Toledo; Seville and Andalusia; Barcelona to Segovia; Granada to Tangier; Costa Del Sol; Lisbon; Portugal’s Southern Coast; Cape Sagres and Lagos. DVD extra features: Festival of the Moors and Christians at Alcoy, Gibraltar, Cordoba, Rick's Back Door Travel Tips" Amazon

Calle 54

Year: 2000 - Country: Spain / France / Italy - Genre: Documentary / Music - Runtime: 105 min - Director: Fernando Trueba - Cast: - Rating: Spain:T / USA:G - Format: DVD

Fernando Trueba presents his love affair with Latin jazz, his camera following 13 giants into the studio. Trueba drapes walls with single colors - red for Jerry González and the Fort Apache band, white for Tito Puente; his camera is close to faces, instruments, hands, and feet; bands' colors contrast with walls or their leader's clothes. Chucho Valdés does a pyrotechnic solo then joins his aged father Bebo for a subdued duet. Puntilla Ríos takes us to Africa, Chano Domínguez to a marriage of jazz and Flamenco, and Eliane Elias, her shoe-less foot on the pedal, to gorgeous and muscular elegance. With Paquito, Cachao, Patato, Chico, Gato, and Michel Camilo, we travel Calle 54. IMDb, Amazon

Buena Vista Social Club

Year: 1999 - Country: Germany/USA/France/Cuba - Director: Wim Wenders - Genre: Documentary - Runtime: 101 mins. - Actors: - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired: October 2006

Wim Wenders intoxicating documentary captures the rehearsals, recording sessions and performances of several giants of Cuban son music, a popular form that dates back to the 1930s. American musician Ry Cooder rounded up these musical greats, some nearly forgotten, and organized a joyous, celebratory collaboration that brought their style of song back into the spotlight. Ibrahim Ferrer, Compay Segundo and Ruben Gonzalez are just a few of the bright lights who enjoy a most deserving revival here. "Fame and acclaim apparently had to wait until these particular musicians were in the twilight of their careers. Like vintage wine and instruments, they seem to have improved with age" (Richard Harrington, Washington Post). English and Spanish.

Buried Mirror, The: Deluxe Boxed Set; VHS, 5 tapes (English version)

Year: - Country: - Director: - Genre: - Runtime: - Actors: - Rating: - Format: DVD - Acquired: October 2006

Documentary / 5/4/1994/ $99.95 / Reference / The Buried Mirror: The Buried Mirror, Complete Set

World-renowned author and diplomat Carlos Fuentes explores the diversity that comprises the Hispanic world. From Spain and Portugal to South and Central America, the Caribbean and the U.S., a whole range of peoples, with specific traditions and histories, make up the entity of Hispanidad.
Complete Set. Five tapes.
Item# Price Qty To Order
VHS: S21375

Individual video descriptions

Caribbean Kids

Video Knowledge Inc. / VHS / Documentary

Stories about real kids of Hispanic backgrounds who live and learn in today's world. Original entertaining musical backgrounds. The stories include TOO, TOO, TOO HOT! (Brunilda illustrates to her class how a coconut palm grows in a hot climate), EVEN YELLOW CARS HAVE TO WAIT IN LINE (A whimsical account of the Aguilar family settling into life in New York City, where things are different from Puerto Rico. Benita is most amazed by waiting on lines), PACO AND HIS PAINTING PALS (The tale of boys building their own clubhouse on a vacant lot, and how bright colors save the day).
55 mins.
VHS: S06730 Spanish version. ISBM 0-922645-71-X (Spanish)
(There is also a separate VHS: S06729 English version. $29.95. ISBN 0-922645-19-1)

Son Sabrosón, Antesala de la Salsa, Documental Histórico

Hugo Barroso / 1999 / VHS / Documentary

Serie: Vengo de Cuba; Historia de la música bailable de Cuba y el Caribe
Discover the history of some of the most exuberant of modern musical forms in this joyful documentary that features some of the legends of Cuban popular music. Benny More, Matamoros, Roberto Faz, Perez Prado, Celia Cruz, Arturo Sandoval, Desi Arnaz and many, many more appear in this tour of the musical landscape that brought us the enchanting rhythms of Son, Guaracha, Cha-cha-cha, Mambo and Rumba. In Spanish, NO ENGLISH SUBTITLES.
90 mins.

The Golden Age of Salsa Music with Larry Harlow

Orlando J. Guzman Colon / 1998 / VHS / Documentary

An infectious blend of Caribbean and African rhythms, Salsa music continues to grow in popularity around the world. In this informative and entertaining documentary, Salsa legend Larry Harlow guides the viewer through the genre's musical roots and spotlights the top performers and most famous clubs of the past. Celia Cruz, Cheo Feliciano, Santos Colon, Ismael Miranda, Arsenio Rodriguez and the Fania All Stars are some of the musical stars featured. English and Spanish with English subtitles.
USA, 70 mins.

The Buried Mirror:Buried Mirror, Program I: The Virgin and the Bull

Carlos Fuentes / VHS / Documentary / Culture-History

World-renowned author and diplomat Carlos Fuentes explores the diversity that comprises the Hispanic world. From Spain and Portugal to South and Central America, the Caribbean and the U.S., a whole range of peoples, with specific traditions and histories, make up the entity of Hispanidad.
Program I: The Virgin and the Bull. Fuentes examines the mix of people found in contemporary Latin America. Spanish, Arab, Jewish, Indian and African forebears make for a rich, illustrious and vibrant culture. From the shores of Vera Cruz to Spain, with its flamenco and bull-fighting traditions, this author traces that which defines Latin America.

The Virgin and the Bull, part 1 of Carlos Fuentes's five-part series subtitled Reflections on Spain and the New World looks at two of the fundamental archetypes in Spanish culture: two archetypes that are at once sensual and poorly understood by outsiders. On the one hand, the Virgin Mary, a woman whose status in Spanish Catholicism and the hearts of the faithful approaches that of a deity, a woman born free of sin, the Mother of God, the ultimate model--however problematic--of womanhood itself. For Mary there have been immense cathedrals built, masterful frescoes plastered, wars waged. The sensual richness of the art in all media that has swirled about the devotion to her provides us a glimpse into the soul of Spanish culture itself; even those who might criticize this from within or without Spain must nonetheless know and experience the importance of the Virgin Mary. On the other hand, the matador, the bull fighter, and his opponent, the bull. We know of the importance of the bull in the art of Spanish masters like Picasso, yet to understand Spanish culture and Spanish identity and the reason why Picasso paints the bull is to see into another sensual side of Spanish life. This side is to many no less problematic than the devotion to Mary. Fuentes asks quite candidly, Where else can a man--in the culture of original machismo--dress in such flamboyant, tight-fitting clothing and strike such poses than in the bull ring? Fuentes explores the Virgin's and the bull's contradictions that somehow make them so similar, microcosmic contradictions that help explain Spain itself: the sexual and nonsexual, the male and the female, the pacifist and the violent, the eternal and the mortal. ( 59 mins.

The Buried Mirror:Buried Mirror, Program II: Conflict of the Gods

Carlos Fuentes / 1065 / VHS: S2137Documentary / Culture-History

World-renowned author and diplomat Carlos Fuentes explores the diversity that comprises the Hispanic world. From Spain and Portugal to South and Central America, the Caribbean and the U.S., a whole range of peoples, with specific traditions and histories, make up the entity of Hispanidad.

Program II: Conflict of the Gods. Modern Mexico City has revealed the Aztec temples and ruins once thought lost. Carlos Fuentes leads the viewer through an exploration of the Indian world that believed the blond exiled god would return. The meeting of Europe and America was bloody, but there is hope in the union of these traditions. (

Conflict of the Gods, part 2 of Carlos Fuentes's five-part series, The Buried Mirror: Reflections on Spain and the New World, looks at the rich, poorly understood cultures that predate contact to colonial Spain: in particular, the Aztecs of México. So many legends and myths are told of the Aztecs, of their bloodthirst, their human sacrifice, their warrior culture and hegemony over what is now central México--Fuentes tries to show us some of the truths and some of the untruths of the Aztecs. For Fuentes, the rediscovery of México's Aztec heritage is something he can recall from childhood. Indeed, it was only in the '20s and '30s of this century that the European models of culture and class distinction began to melt and give way to the diverse fabric that is México today. To do this, Fuentes brings us on a trip through Aztec and Maya Pyramids and teaches us of their astronomy--and their serenity. That their prophecies foretold the return of their blond-haired patron god from exile puts an ironic, ambiguous spin on the demise of the Aztecs and Maya so soon after contact with the Spanish. --Erik Macki
59 mins.

The Buried Mirror:Buried Mirror, Program III: The Age of Gold
Carlos Fuentes / 1066 / VHS: S21372 / Documentary / Culture-History

World-renowned author and diplomat Carlos Fuentes explores the diversity that comprises the Hispanic world. From Spain and Portugal to South and Central America, the Caribbean and the U.S., a whole range of peoples, with specific traditions and histories, make up the entity of Hispanidad.

Program III: The Age of Gold. Shortly after the conquest Spain and all of Europe felt the rush of enormous treasures from the New World, including not just gold and silver but chocolate, the tomato and the potato. These gifts transformed a world ambivalent about earthly things. Phillip II lived in a monastic-like cell while Cervantes questioned all values in his work. And yet Native Americans transformed the richness of the Baroque into an American idiom. ( After Cristobal Colombo's nondiscovery of a trans-Atlantic route from Europe to India in 1492, it took Europeans another hundred years or so to figure out that the people Colombo had labeled indios, "Indians," were in fact no such thing. This was a new world, in fact, and its mysteries evoked all the dreams and lore of lost continents that have been told in Europe for millennia. The lore of el Dorado--the city of gold, the fountain of youth, paradise itself--was a prime motivator for early Spanish explorers in the Americas. The Age of Gold is part 3 of Carlos Fuentes's five-part series The Buried Mirror: Reflections on Spain and the New World, and it looks at the Spanish exploration and early colonization of the New World--and the effects that treasures like gold, silver, chocolate, tomatoes, and the potato had on the Old. While civilizations were under threat in the New World, Philip II was leading a detached life at the Spanish court and defending Roman Catholicism from all threats perceived and real--and a golden age of culture was flourishing in a Spain that read Cervantes's subversive Don Quixote and saw Velázquez's brutally accurate masterpieces. --Erik Macki. 59 mins.

The Buried Mirror:Buried Mirror, Program IV: The Price of Freedom

Carlos Fuentes / 1067 / VHS / Documentary / Culture-History

World-renowned author and diplomat Carlos Fuentes explores the diversity that comprises the Hispanic world. From Spain and Portugal to South and Central America, the Caribbean and the U.S., a whole range of peoples, with specific traditions and histories, make up the entity of Hispanidad.

Program IV: The Price of Freedom. One million Mexicans gather in the Zocalo, the central square of Mexico City, to celebrate El Grito, the cry for independence. Beginning here, Fuentes travels south into the rest of Latin America, sifting through the difficulties and failed promises left in the wake of revolutionary independence. ( Revolution has characterized nearly every aspect of Latin American history and culture in the last 500 years; in Carlos Fuentes's The Price of Freedom, the fourth part of his five-tape series, The Buried Mirror: Reflections on Spain and the New World, he explores specifically the lives and philosophies of political revolutionaries from San Martín to Bolívar. From his deathbed Bolívar declared, "Those who serve the revolution plow the seas"--but he could not have foreseen the immense difficulty that the postrevolutionary era would encounter in constructing politically, economically, and socially stable societies--societies in which justice and progress worked hand in hand with a Spanish and Native American heritage. This is the era of the gaucho, the cowboy, and the birth of great cities, from the México City that absorbed old Tenochtitlán to Buenos Aires. --Erik Macki
59 mins.

The Buried Mirror:Buried Mirror, Program V: Unfinished Business

Carlos Fuentes / 1068 / VHS / Documentary / Culture-History

World-renowned author and diplomat Carlos Fuentes explores the diversity that comprises the Hispanic world. From Spain and Portugal to South and Central America, the Caribbean and the U.S., a whole range of peoples, with specific traditions and histories, make up the entity of Hispanidad.

Program V: Unfinished Business. This century has brought enormous changes to the Hispanic communities of the world. Today half a million Mexicans brave border patrols to enter the US in search of Gringo gold. In return they bring Latino gold, the riches of centuries of tradition and change.

Future generations will certainly draw comparisons between the Renaissance and the 20th century. The Renaissance brought Spain's discovery of, and profit from, the New World--starting a 500-year-long course of radical, rapid change. Unfinished Business, the last part of Carlos Fuentes's five-part series, The Buried Mirror: Reflections on Spain and the New World, looks at the 20th century and how it has brought the New World back in touch with the Old--technology and transportation have made the world smaller, more mobile, closer. But prosperity has been difficult to propagate. Plagued with unemployment and social unrest, Latin America has cosmopolitan societies with a virtually disenfranchised agrarian class. The United States is increasingly bound to its southern Spanish-speaking neighbors as millions of illegal immigrants make their way north of the Rio Grande--Fuentes remarks, "They are looking for the Gringo hold but also bringing the Latino gold." By the year 2020 by some estimates, 30 percent of United States residents will speak Spanish as their first language. The multiplicity of cultures, art, music, dance, and family ties has already left its indelible mark on North America. What the next 500 years have in store will certainly surprise as much as the past 500 years have. Part 5 in some ways concludes Fuentes's well-researched, excellently photographed journey; in other ways, Unfinished Business leaves us with as many questions as when we began. --Erik Macki
59 mins.

New ways of seeing Picasso / Braque and the cubist revolution

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Last updated: September 29, 2016