TEN BOOKS ON LATINO CINEMA
HISPANICS IN HOLLYWOOD
By Luis Reyes ad Peter Rubie
Garland Publishing, Inc.
New York & London, 1994
To date, this is still the definitive book on Latinos in the motion picture and television industry. The 569 page “encyclopedia of Film and Television,” is divided into sections on “Movies,” “Television,” “TV Series” “TV Movies and Miniseries” and also has special chapters on the phenomenon of “Zorro” and “The Cisco Kid.” The brainchild of long time film publicist Luis Reyes and co-written with author/editor Peter Rubie, the book benefits from Reyes’ life experience working in Hollywood. Virtually any film ever made featuring Latino themes, characters or actors is profiled in the “Movies” section. Film profiles include detailed and often little known background information on films as well as television series. An appendix contains in depth and thorough biographies of leading Latino actors, writers, producers, directors and crew personnel. A must for the library of anyone seriously interested in Latinos in motion pictures and television.
Edited By Gary D. Keller
Bilingual Review Press
Binghamton, New York, 1985
One of the first books to document the new generation of Chicano and Chicana filmmakers, writers, producers and directors, Dr. Gary Keller’s anthology includes essays from a wide variety of writers, ranging from distinguished academicians such as Dr. Carlos Córtes, David Maciel,
Cordelia Candelaria and Dr. Rolando Hinojosa to film critics like Gregg Barrios and Rosa Linda Fregoso to the filmmakers themselves. Film reviews and criticism cover Chicano cinema documentaries such as I Am Joaquin, Ballad of an Unsung Hero, Cinco Vidas and The Unwanted
as well as early narrative films such as Raíces de Sangre, The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez, Seguín and Zootsuit.
IMAGES OF THE MEXICAN
AMERICAN IN FICTION AND FILM
By Arthur G. Pettit
Texas A & M University Press
College Station, Texas, 1980
For many years Arthur Pettit’s historic overview of cinematic
renderings of Mexicans and Latinos was the only book to cover the field. Beginning with the images and stereotypes that were promulgated in the era of silent films–the “Greaser” and the Latinas as the“women of the conquest,” Pettit reviews portrayals of Mexicans and other Latinos in American cinema to 1976. Particularly enlightening is his review of the portrayal of Mexicans in popular fiction and how this impacted cinematic renderings. A valuable asset for anyone interested in the portrayal of Latinos in cinema and popular fiction.
THE CHICANO/HISPANIC IMAGE
IN AMERICAN FILM
by Frank Javier Garcia Berumen
New York, New York, 1995
A good follow-up to Arthur Pettit’s review of Mexican portrayals in American cinema, Harvard educated Frank Berumen goes much more in depth in his analysis of portrayals in motion pictures
from the 1920s through the early 1990s. Culling from reviews in trade publications and
contemporary press, as well as industry sources, Berumen manages to hone well researched scholarship into an engaging account of Latino portrayals in Hollywood in a style accessible to the average reader.
CHICANOS AND FILM-
REPRESENTATION AND RESISTANCE
Edited by Chon A. Noriega
University of Minnesota Press
Minneapolis & London, 1992
This collection of scholarly essays on Chicano cinema includes essays on
mainstream Hollywood motion pictures as well as independent documentaries and narrative films of the first generation
of Chicano and Chicana filmmakers. Though the essays are uneven, the volume is distinguished by its inclusion of early manifestos and documents of the Chicano Cinema movement including Jason Johansen’s Notes on Chicano Cinema, Sylvia Morales’ Filming a Chicana Documentary
and Towards the Development of a Raza Cinema by Francisco X. Camplís.
LATINO/A FILM ICONS AND IMAGES
By Frank Javier Garcia Berumen
The third in Berumen’s trilogy of books on the subject of Latinos in Hollywood, this volume covers Latino actors who became icons of the big screen from 1894 to1959. Exhaustively researched, the actor profiles include not only some of the bigger names like Ricardo Montalban, Anthony Quinn, Cesar Romero and Carmen Miranda, but also lesser known actors such as Tomás Gómez, Elena Verdugo and Elsa Cardenas. In reviewing each decade, Berumen provides context by singling out key motion pictures representative of the decade. Meticulously footnoted, with an extensive bibliography, Berumen once again takes a scholarly study and makes it imminently popular and enjoyable. Volume Two is forthcoming.
EL NORTE – THE U.S. BORDER
IN CONTEMPORARY CINEMA
By Dr. David R. Maciel
Institute for Regional Studies
San Diego State University, 1990
In under a hundred pages of thoughtful analysis, David Maciel manages to cover every significant motion pictures produced in either Mexico or the United States dealing with the phenomenon of the U.S.. Mexico border. Covering Mexican border classics
like Mojados, Deportados and including films made during the socially conscious 1970s–films like
De Sangre Chicana, Chicano, Mojado Power–Maciel also covers Hollywood portrayals of the
border in such films as Borderline, The Border and Viva Max. The volume concludes with a
review of films about the border experiences made by the new generation of Chicano filmmakers–films such as El Norte, Ballad of Gregorio Córtez and Break of Dawn.
THE ETHNIC EYE-
LATINO MEDIA ARTS
Edited By Chon A. Noriega
and Ana M. Lopez
This volume of essays by film scholars covers the spectrum of both mainstream Hollywood and independent Latino film makers as well as documentaries, experimental videos, multi-media
installations and performance art. Overview essays cover the emergence of Chicano cinema. Puerto Rican Cinema, Cuban American cinema and the Latino gay experience as portrayed
in film and video. Hollywood films reviewed include Stand and Deliver, El Mariachi and American Me. Independent cinema reviews include Carmelita Tropicana, One Moment in Time and Improper Conduct.
EYEWITNESS- A FILMMAKER’S
MEMOIR OF THE CHICANO MOVEMENT
by Jesús Salvador Treviño
Pioneering documentary filmmaker and television director Jesús Treviño recounts his experiences documenting key historical events of the Mexican American Civil Rights Movement from 1968 to 1978–events which he both
participated in and documented as a filmmaker. The book is remarkable for its uncompromising honesty and for its analysis and discussion, in the final chapter, of the success and failures of the Chicano Movement seen from the hindsight of the year 2000. Culling from a rich store of archival materials, the book conveys an authenticity of the times that prompted United Farm Worker’s Vice-President Dolores Huerta to declare it, “A riveting and courageous testimony that rekindles the spirit of the Chicano urban movement.”
MY LAST SIGH
by Luis Buñuel
New York, New York,1984
The creator of such cinematic classics as Belle Du Jour, Los Olvidados and The Exterminating Angel recounts his early years in Spain, his experiences in Paris as a surrealist, and his later years as a world famous motion picture director. Peppered throughout this memoir are Buñuel’s thoughtful views on memory, history, cinema and art.
First published in 1983, as an insight into the process of creativity of a unique artist, this book still holds up. Especially memorable are observations such:”Chance governs all things; necessity, which is far from having the
same purity, comes only later.”
Scott l. Baugh’s Latino American Cinema is a welcome addition to books highlighting the growth of Latino cinema in America. While not as exhaustive as Hispanics in Hollywood, in terms of bios on classic film actors and directors, this volume stands out precisely because it takes on new material focusing on contemporary Latin American media and cinema both within and outside of the United States. The book includes profiles of Cuban directors such as Santiago Alvarez, Sara Gómez and Julio García Espinosa, Mexican directors such as Arturo Ripstein, Paul Leduc and Alfonso Arau, as well as Chicano directors such as Greg Nava, Jesús Treviño, Isaac Artenstein, Luis Valdez, Cheech Marin and Miguel Arteta. The profiles of actors and actresses reaches from Brazil to Mexico to the United States. The book is also notable for its attention to organizations such as the ICAIC, Nosotros, NALIP, NLRC and The National Hispanic Media Coalition. While Latino American Cinema’s list of movies is not exhaustive, the value of this volume’s list of Latino movies is in its selectivity. Without doubt, this is an important work that merits inclusion in the library of any one interested in Latino cinema.