Films for Latin American History Courses

Each year, I teach several Latin American History Courses. These include Colonial Latin America, Modern Latin America, Modern Mexico, US-Latin American Relations, Health and Society in Latin America, and Latin American Revolutions.

In each of these classes, my students respond really well to the films and documentaries we watch. I enjoy helping them connect the historical events we discuss in class with real and fictionalized accounts of everyday life in Latin America, and also to see (usually for the first time) the many environments that make up the cities and villages of the region.

Guided by my constant search for new films to use, and a desire to develop a future course on Latin American History through Film, I’ve decided to start my own Latin American Film Club to make my way through a collection of new-to-me cinema. I compiled my list based on recommendations from colleagues, and welcome any additional suggestions you might have.

I won’t post a review of each one here, but I will give my (brief) thoughts on my twitter account as I go along. Follow me at @steph_opp

For consideration:

A Place Called Chiapas


Amores Perros

And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself

Black Orpheus

Blame it on Fidel

Bolivar Soy Yo

Bus 174


Carmen Miranda: Bananas Is My Business


City of God


Cooking Up Dreams

El Infierno

El Silencio de Neto

Entre Nos

Eva Peron

Fidel: A Conversation

Fidel: The Untold Story

Four Days in September

Gringo in Mananaland

How Tasty Was My Little Frenchman

La Ciénaga

Let’s Go with Pancho Villa

Looking for Fidel


Memories of Underdevelopment

Men with Guns


Our Lady of the Assassins

Pictures from a Revolution

Presumed Guilty

Que Viva Mexico

Rosario Tijeras

Saludos Amigos/Three Caballeros

Strawberry and Chocolate

The Blonds

The Devil’s Miner

The Last Supper

The Official Story

The Other Conquest

The Revolution Will Not Be Televised

The Student

The Take

The Year My Parents Went on Vacation

Vidas Secas

Walt and El Grupo


Currently use:

Aguirre, Wrath of God


El Compadre Mendoza

Even the Rain


Herod’s Law

Innocent Voices

Journey to Bananaland

Like Water for Chocolate


Sin Nombre

South of the Border

The Hugo Chavez Show (Frontline)

The Motorcycle Diaries

The Sixth Sun

The Storm that Swept Mexico