10 Best Latin American Movies

Wednesday, February 2 by Shawn Lealos

The best Latin American movies approach the subjects of politics and poverty in the various Latin American countries. Whether it is a historical figure such as Che Guevara or a fictional tale of love and survival in the impoverished lands, these movies remain some of the greatest films ever made.

  1. “The Motorcycle Diaries” – Based on the memoirs of Che Guevara, this remains one of the best Latin American movies of all time. Gael Garcia Bernal stars as a 23-year old Guevara as he takes a road trip through South America and discovers firsthand the poverty inflicting the people.
  2. “Che”Benicio del Toro stars in this two-part movie epic about the life and career of Che Guevara, one of the best Latin American movies of all time. Steven Soderbergh directs this movie, which clocks in at almost five hours. Del Toro won the Best Actor award at Cannes for his portrayal of the revolutionary.
  3. “Tetro”Francis Ford Coppola set this movie in Argentina. The movie follows two brothers from an Italian immigrant family and their trials and tribulations in the face of controversy.
  4. “Amores Perros” – This movie owes a lot to the filmmaking style of Quentin Tarantino and remains one of the best Latin American movies of all time. The movie follows three separate storylines that are all connected by an auto accident in Mexico City.
  5. “City of God” – This drama, directed by Fernando Meirelles, is one of the best Latin American movies of all time. The movie tells the story of the organized crime and drug lords in Rio de Janeiro. It was nominated for four Academy Awards and spawned a television series called “City of Men.”
  6. “Y Tu Mama Tambien” – This sex drama remains one of the best Latin American movies ever made. The movie is a road trip, coming of age story, featuring two young men who meet an older woman and both explore their sexuality. The movie was nominated for Best Screenplay at the Academy Awards.
  7. “The Secret in Their Eyes” – This crime thriller set in Argentina. Based on a mystery novel, the movie won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Film in 2009, making Argentina the first Latin American country to ever win the award twice.
  8. “The Official Story” – This Argentina drama is one of the best Latin American movies of all time. The movie tells the story of a couple who adopts a child only to discover that their new daughter may be the child of one of the victims who disappeared during the Dirty War.
  9. “Frida”Salma Hayek earned an Academy Award nomination for her portrayal of Mexican painter Frida Kahlo in one of the best Latin American movies of all time. The movie also won two Oscars, for Best Makeup and Best Original Music Score. The movie tracks the life and death of the artist.
  10. “The Black Orpheus” – This Brazilian film is an adaptation of the Greek tale of Orpheus. The movie won the Palme d’Or at Cannes and both the Academy Award and Golden Globe for Best Foreign Film. It is available as a Criterion Collection DVD.
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