Hispanic War Movies

Thursday, March 31 by Annmicha Blugh

Hispanic war movies are derived from the regions turbulent political past. In light of its very unstable political history, wars and revolutions are common and as such portrayed in the movies.  Mexico, Colombia, Ecuador, Cuba and several other Hispanic countries have been embroiled in conflicts which took the lives of many, resulting from or ending in dictatorships.

  1. "Che" (2008) is a movie retelling the events in the life of Ernesto 'Che' Guevara. This two part movie recounts the political events in both revolutionary Cuba and Argentina. The films, detailing Hispanic guerrilla warfare, date from Fidel Castro's assuming power in communist Cuba in the 1950s to Guevara's death in 1967.
  2. "Chronicle of an Escape" or "Crónica de una fuga" (2006) is a film made in Argentina whose director is Israel Adrián Caetano. The film is about Argentina's Dirty War, which occurred in the 1970s. The plot of the film is the capture, torture and near-death escape from execution of four men. The Dirty War led to the disappearances and supposed death of thousands during a military dictator, Jorge Rafael Videla. 
  3. "Aguirre, the Wrath of God" or "Aguirre der Zorn Gottes" (1972) gives historical speculation on Spanish conquistadores during the Conquest period. Outlining the pirate-like activities of the Spanish on expeditions set to explore and exploit wealth of the New World, this movie graphically depicts the violent encounters between Native Amerindians and the Europeans in Hispanic lands. 
  4. "Mambi" (1998) is another embattled film, which projects the goings-on in Cuba in the year 1898. In Cuba, the Mambi describes the freedom fighters or rebels who fought to make Cuba independent from colonial rule. The Mambi or the Cuban revolutionary patriots of 1898 had tactics similar to Afro-Caribbeans who fought with machetes.
  5. "One Man's Hero" (1999) is a Hispanic war movie in which the Mexican-American war lasting between 1846 to 1848 is the historical background. "One Man's Hero" tells of the desertion of Catholic US soldiers who decide to return to Ireland through migration to Mexico. In the movie, the soldiers are on the run from both the US force and the Mexican soldiers, both of whom can kill them on sight. 
  6. "Havana" (1990) is a Hispanic war narrative recounting some atrocities and activities of Cuban revolutionaries. Told in the eyes of an American who visits Havana, the movie delves into the legitimized secret police, capturing and torture of Cuban citizens. 
  7. "Juan's Boots" (2003) records through cinema the events of the Colombian revolution, the forced recruitment of young guerrillas, torturing chambers and political tension. The key imagery in this movie, the boots, betrays the loyalty of the citizens. 
  8. "Romero" (1989) is a movie in which archbishop Oscar Romero is in the midst of warfare between the government forces and revolutionaries who want to topple their opponents. In the end, Romero dies as a martyr who dies for lifting up his voice against the El Salvadorean government's inhumanity and corruption.
Do you like this story?