Hispanic movie directors are hardly ever mentioned or credited on American media or news ,although they remain some of the most potent filmmakers.Here’s a list of the best Hispanic filmmakers to know.
Known as the father of cinematic surrealism, Luis Buñuel is one of the most original directors in the history of film.He was regarded by the American director, Albert Hitchcock as the best director to be ever alive.He was labeled a surrealist early on his career due to ‘Une Chie Andalou’ his famous collaboration with artist Salvador Dali.He’s work was mainly preoccupied with issues of religion,sex and higher class.His films often mocked the idealism of religion ,especially that of Catholicism which was the center of regard for Spain.Buñuel often had to flee Spain,more than once throughout his career as he his films were often censored and offensive to the church.
“Los Olvidados” was his first feature-length film and second international breakthrough ,twenty years after “Un Chien Adalou”.Translated literally as “The Forgotten Ones”and released as “The Young and the Dammed” in the U.S..This film is a classic examination of the low-class people in Mexico, as it is mainly focused on its famine youth.The film centers around two street punks caught in the cycle of poverty and violence riddled barrios.The film ends on account of crime as one of the boys kills someone in a fight and threatens the younger boy not to speak of the crime and the later guilt-ridden boy is later haunted in his dreams. The film was first condemned by the Mexican people as it was deemed offensive by which Buñuel then resolution a “happy” ending to the film. That same year Buñuel won the best director prize at Cannes and was immediately recognized and praised in the Mexico.
Le Charme Discret de la Bourgeoisie(1972)
Translated as “The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoise ” one of Luis Buñuel’s best-known works, for it was awarded an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film.This film revolves around six bourgeois friends, including Bunuel favorites Fernando Rey and Jean-Pierre Casse.A satire about the bourgeoisie in which they are portrayed as shallow and materialistic.This great comedy portrays the characters in their emptiness while they feed off superficial urges .Their thirst is sought during interrupted meal which they never come about,sex,and of desire for money. The latter is then focused on the hypocrisy of the ambassador as he feels entitled in his position to do as he is pleased and in his arrogance commits adultery by sleeping with his friend’s wife and is entrenched in other vain acts.
Guillermo Del Toro
Director from Guadalajara,Mexico is a notable filmmaker who got notable praise for co-writing and or directing comic adaptations and blockbusters like “Hellboy”,’The Hobbit’,and most recent “Pacific Rim”.Guillermo Del Toro first made his debut in 1993 with film “Cronos”,which won him eight Ariel Awards from the Mexico academy of Film,also receiving The International Critics International Critics Week Prize at Cannes.Then again in 2006 his film Pan’s Labyrinth won him global acclaim,earning $80 million worldwide.Pan’s labyrinth also became a top foreign film release in the US.A critic’s favorite that received an Oscar nomination for Best Foreign Film.
His debut film that acclaimed him as a writer and director .A film based on character Jesus Gris, an old antique keeper that comes upon an occult artifact named Cronos. He discovers this mysterious antique can rejuvenate him and grant him eternal life .However, Cronos brings trouble to him as he fights Angel de la Guardia and his malicious,master De la Guardia who wants to get the sacred device.As he battles to keep Cronos he finds out too late that there’s a catch for avoiding death .He fails to take the advice of his niece Aura to give Cronos away,as she has witnessed his first vile transfiguration that changes everything for the worse.
The tale of a young girl in the midst of a new domestic and drastic life change set in 1944 warfare, Spain.As her ill mother marries a sadistic army general ,which place’s them in a place of danger ,violence and isolation.She retrieves to a labyrinth in which she then encounters Pan ,a mythological creature from her adored fantasy books .Pan makes a compromise with her .He promises to make her a renown princess but she must first prove her royalty by performing three risky tasks.A great fantasy that tells the tale of an obscure fantasy and harsh reality of war riddled time.
“Devil’s Backbone” released in 2001 , co-produced by filmmaker Pedo Almodovár, is one of Del Toro’s first films that set his dark style of cinematic,themes in his films as a director.This film about 12- year-old boy,Carlos who’s left an orphan after his father dies in the Spanish Civil War. Carlos soon discovers the orphanage is haunted with ghosts that crave for his attention .The boy in his solitude is left to deal with a bully at the orphanage and a snarling ghost.
Born in Lisbon,Portugal Pedro Costa was known for ‘Horse Money'(2014),’Colossal Youth'(2006) and ‘Ossos'(1997).Pedro Costa is the son of director and writer Luis Felipe Costa.Costa’s films are highly independent,classified as art films that follow no articulate form of high artificial special effects or revamping ,his films are filmed in natural light in a real life setting.Most of his work has been harshly criticized and lowly rewarded .Although he is regarded as one of the strongest independent, filmmakers of his time.
Translated as “Bones”is the first film in Costa’s transformative Funtainhas trilogy,which is based in impoverished part of Lisbon.”Ossos”,specifically focuses on the lives of a suicidal ,junkie girl who gave birth to a firstborn child .Clotilde unthinkably leaves the baby in the care the deadbeat father ,who rummaged through the streets of the town trying to find care for the baby.The scenes switch back and forth almost unnoticeably between the mother’s struggle to work in her unstable condition and the father’s vagabond retreats to keep the baby alive.Nothing in “Ossos” is definitive ,the actors are ambiguous about their journeys,the plot is unimaginable,the storyline unaware of the circumstances that are given. Nothing changes for the better or worse,a real French-style, art film production of slowed, real life-like scenes that keep you wanting more.
Juventude En March (2006)
The last of his Funtainhas trilogy ,” Colossal Youth”chronicles the relocation of Cape Verdean immigrant, Ventura inhabitant of a Lisbon slum to a newly constructed district on the far end of the city.This film takes the same definitive style of filming as’Ossos”and “In Vanda’s Room”.Ventura is captured rummaging through his new and old home,reconnecting with people from the past.Everything is captured in a most natural,documentary-like aesthetic .As Costa intended to capture the essence of the Lisbon impoverished tenants ,an art-induced political statement about the low standards of living of these people.
Director, writer, producer, and actor from Huesca, Spain is a well-accepted director nationally and internationally.He is among Europe’s elite filmmakers,alongside contemporary and mentor, Luis Buñuel.During the ’60s and ’70s , his work became the most recognizable in which his film content dealt with political matters of the time.During which at the time he won many awards ,among the Silver Bear award at the Berlin Festival for “Hunt” and “Peppermint Frappé”.As well as an award in Cannes for Cousin Angelina from 1974 and Cria Cuervos from 1974 and “Mama Turns 100” got an Oscar nomination for Best Foreign Film.Although he went on to make great films after the ’70s, his work was acclaimed with less potency than his earlier work.
Cria Cuervos (1976)
“Cria Cuervos “is based on orphan sisters Irene,Ana,Maite who are then raised by aunt Paulina and immobile grandmother.The three orphan sisters new world is seen through the eyes of Ana,who witnessed their mother’s death is greatly affected by the loss .Ana becomes fascinated by all things morbid ,a type of trauma by the loss of her parents that takes her subconscious mind alive at her waking hour.
Peppermint Frappé (1967)
This story is about a middle-aged doctor, Julian who encounters childhood friend Paulo.Paulo then married to a beautiful,young blonde Elena who Julian falls in love with almost rapidly.The story goes along as Julian’s infatuation with Elena carries on ,to a point of luring her into falling in love with him.Elena diligently ignores his attempts and desperate Julian comes to see a close resemblance between her and nurse Ana.He then works to transform Ana into looking like Elena .