Veronico Cruz, with stunning photography, details the life of a small boy growing up in Salta during the years of military repression just prior to the Malvinas War.
It also demonstrates the problems teachers face in remote parts of Latin America (Facets).
Maria’s Story (Film makers Library) demonstrates daily adversity on a personal level by following the mother of three who doubles as a leader of the country’s guerrilla movement.
Filmed on site, it shows Maria’s commitment to social change in the face of rural poverty.
Space permits mention of only a handful of films which members have used with success in stimulating class discussion and portraying those aspects of Latin American culture best portrayed visually.
This essay excludes Mexico, which merits an essay on its own.The latter is available from the University of California Extension which provides numerous films with an anthropological perspective.A number of recent films focus on the violence of guerrilla movements and drug mafia.Particularly effective is Cuba–In the Shadow of Doubt (Film makers Library) an historical treatment of Castro’s rise to power and dominance.It is one of the few films shot on location at La Plata.For the urban scene, see Growing Up in the South, a documentary of street kids in Cusco, Peru, and Villa El Salvador: A Desert Dream, an optimistic portrayal of a squatter settlement in Lima.The last three films are available from Cinema Guild.Icarus Films offers A Question of Conscience which treats the highly publicized and shocking murder of 6 Jesuit priests, their cook and her daughter, in 1989, as well as El Salvador The Seeds of Liberty which deals with the 1980 murder of three nuns and lay missionary, Jean Donovan.The feature film, Romero, starring Raul Julia, shows how reality transformed this country pastor into a defender of El Salvador’s oppressed, leading to his martyrdom.General Pinocet is the focus of Chile: Hasta Cuando?with flashbacks to 1973 and the violence which followed the coup (Film makers Library).