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Latinx Representation in Film

List of Latinx Films

Carol Highsmith, photographer. Ceiling art inside the Hollywood/Vine Metro subway station in the Hollywood section of Los Angeles, California. 2013. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division. LC-DIG-highsm- 24413

Welcome to the Latinx Filmographies! This resource compiles moving images we have determined to be representative of Latinidad in the United States.

The first step in compiling this full filmography led to a discussion of Latina/o/x representation in motion pictures. We define Latinx representation in movies as 1. films containing Latinx characters regardless of whether they are being played by a Latina/o/x actor(s), 2. films containing Latina/o/x actor(s) regardless of whether they are playing a Latinx character, and 3. films directed by Latina/o(s) regardless of whether the story contains Latinx characters and/or Latina/o/x actors.

The filmographies include mostly narrative films, with a few documentaries and short films highlighted throughout. By no means does it represent a comprehensive selection. We do not include TV series or films made outside of the United States. We do, however, include collaborative productions between the United States and other countries.

The above parameters were helpful in defining our research, but a true complete filmography of Latina/o(s) in film is not possible. Aiming to capture as many films as possible, we gathered film titles from conversations with film experts, secondary literature, and a survey sent out to the public. We spoke with Latino Studies and Film Studies professors Robert Chester, Mirasol Enríquez, and Charles Ramírez Berg. We drew from scholarship by scholars Carlos Cortes, Gary Keller, Charles Ramírez Berg, Chon Noriega, and Clara E. Rodríguez.

At the moment of this guide’s publication, we have compiled a full filmography containing over 1,500 films. In order to facilitate users’ experience navigating the full filmography, we have provided shorter lists of films: a Selected Filmography and a Thematic Filmography. The Selected Filmography is organized chronologically and contains up to ten films per decade. We selected these films because they were “firsts” of some kind e.g. first Latinx-centric film, or featuring performances of the first Latina/o(s) to win or be nominated for a major industry award, or because they are agreed upon by scholars as being historically significant or well-known at the time they were released. The Thematic Filmography explores the following major themes: Borderlands, Finding Home, Latinx Biopics, History, Family, and Identity. The goal of the Thematic Filmography is to highlight films within Latinx cinema focused on specific recurring themes and provide an avenue for researchers to better understand Latinx representation. The selected films were identified by analyzing the various recurring themes and researching our extensive Latinx filmography to curate a list of films for each theme.

Lastly, we include the complete filmography of over 1,500 Latinx films organized Alphabetically and Chronologically to facilitate searching either by title or year of release, respectively.

Check out the Latinx filmographies by visiting the following sub-pages in this guide:

As will be evident throughout our guide, there is a long and complex history of representation of Latina/o(s) in film dating back to 1894. Many films are derogatory in nature: they vilify the Latinx community through stereotypical and harmful representations. After long conversations with the team and with experts in the field, we decided it was important to include these as part of the filmography because they are part of how images of Latina/o(s) have been constructed in the American imagination and memory. We do not condone defamatory representations of Latina/o(s) in film. Our intent as curators of this research guide is to make these film titles available to researchers and to make available for Library of Congress users the complicated, and often upsetting history of the ways in which Latina/o(s) have been represented. The Overview of Latinx Representation in Film essay to provide historical context for the filmography and describe some of the patterns and themes that scholars have identified for each decade. This is a very brief essay, and the sources consulted are linked at the end for users who may want to learn more.

How to Access Films That Are Part of the Library's Collection

Please note that not all films listed in this guide's filmographies are cataloged or searchable in the Library of Congress Online Catalog. Most films, videos, and DVDs in the Library's vast moving image collections have not been fully cataloged. As there is no single comprehensive catalog for the Library's holdings, searching for moving image material in the Library of Congress may involve the use of one or more catalogs, internal databases, and finding aids. Please contact the Moving Image Research Center to confirm availability of film and the best way to gain access.

Cataloged films listed in the filmographies will link to fuller bibliographic information in the Library of Congress Online Catalog.

We recommend visiting the Moving Image Research at the Library of Congress guide (linked below) for additional tips and resources to access the Library's moving image collections.