Hola! The wonderful Moro Spanish Film Festival, originally planned for April, has been postponed. You can click here to see the highlights.
In the meanwhile you can still get your fix of Spanish language films and TV series on streaming services. Now is the time to catch up with some of these passionate and engaging works. We’ve curated eight of them to get you started on your Latino journey.
The Distinguished Citizen Spain/Argentina 2016
This Argentinian feature tells the story of Daniel Mantovani. A winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, after months of being away from public appearances he suddenly decides to travel to his old home town in Argentina to receive their Distinguished Citizen Award. But he hasn’t visited for 40 years, and not everyone is pleased to see him. Available on Netflix. Click here to read the Glam review from the 2017 Spanish Film Festival.
Roma Mexico 2018
This much lauded feature from Mexico tells the story of a maid in Mexico City in the 1970s and the middle-class family she works for. Shot in black-and-white, this has a documentary feel about it. A deeply emotional work. Available on Netflix.
Hierro Spain Season 1 2019
The wonderful Candela Pena stars in this crime thriller. Magistrate Candela Montes arrives on the remote Canary Island of Hierro, expecting a quiet existence along with her son who has a disability. Instead, she is confronted by the murder of a young man on the day before his wedding. This series is imbued with the tensions of a closed community and its inherent prejudices. There is also incredible chemistry between Pena and Diaz, the main suspect, played by Dario Grandinetti. Available on SBS On Demand. And if you get hooked, season 2 is being shot this year!
The Pier Spain Season 1 2019
This extraordinary series from Spain has it all! High-profile architect Alexandra is understandably devastated when she learns that her husband Oscar has killed himself. But the worst is yet to come when she discovers that he has been leading a double-life, and may have been murdered. She goes to the beautiful Albufera district to find out more, meeting his other woman, Veronica. A murder mystery, certainly, but more an intense study in human relationships outside of the norm, love, friendship, and life choices. Add some stunning scenery, some passionate and grown-up erotica, and a sharp script and you have a winner. Available on SBS On Demand. Season 2 is currently being shot.
Inspector Rojas: In Cold Blood Chile 2018
In the late 1990s young women started disappearing from the remote, impoverished town of Alto Hospicio in northern Chile. Local police dismiss them as runaways. It takes an Inspector from Santiago to realise they are the victims of a serial killer, and to start hunting him. This true story has been dramatized just as much as need be to keep the narrative rolling, but not so much as to lose the gritty, respectful realism. Everything from the unusual setting, the abundant humanity and the powerhouse performance of Francisco Melo in the lead role is perfect in this television drama. Available on SBS On Demand. Season 2 (a different story) is in production.
You’re Killing Me Susana Mexico 2016
A fun, lighthearted romantic comedy follows semi-successful actor Eligio as he chases his wife Susana to the USA, where she has run off to a writers’ workshop. The main attraction of this film is Gael Garcia Bernal in the lead role. Bernal has won a BAFTA for his role in The Motorcycle Diaries, and a Golden Globe for Mozart in the Jungle. This is delicious froth, with laughs and sexy fun aplenty. Available on SBS On Demand
Kiki: Love to Love Spain 2016
Five intertwined narratives tell the stories of couples exploring various kinks and sexual proclivities. In the end, all are searching for their own expression of love. Full of Latino eroticism, laughs, charm and infinite warmth, although this isn’t a family movie, it is surprisingly accessible given the subject-matter. A perfect choice for an isolation date-night. Open a bottle of Tempranillo and snuggle up with your significant other. Available on SBS On Demand
Neruda Chile/ Argentina 2017
Great Chilean poet and politician Pablo Neruda is here portrayed by Luis Gnecco. In the late 1940s Neruda joined the Communist Party and became a fugitive in his own country. Inspector Peluchanneau (Gael Garcia Bernal) is sent to hunt him down. A dark and intense work portraying a complex man, and a particular time in Chilean, and world, history.
Available on Netflix and SBS On Demand.