Como casi todo en mi vida, empecé tarde. Mis padres nunca –y esta vez nunca es realmente nunca- me llevaron al cine. Recién a los diez años fue cuando un familiar lejano me invitó a ver una película del cual no tengo recuerdo ni de las sensaciones que en mi despertaron. En la adolescencia, aunque era la manera de hacer grupo y salir con las chicas, nunca pude darme el lujo de ir al cine. Me perdí así la Guerra de las Galaxias, Regresar al Futuro e Indiana Jones. Jamás vi en el cine a Rambo, Jonh McClaine, Depredador o Freddy Krueger en acción. Me limitaba a esperar en Frecuencia Latina (canal 2) los estrenos dominicales de Cine Millonario. Pero entonces llegó el VHS casi a la par con el Betamax, (una estupidez pero feroz batalla por el monopolio de las lectoras de videos). Empecé así mi aventura del cine. Alquilando películas piratas, vi todo lo que pude ver y lo que no había visto hasta entonces y quedé prendido del cine. Pero la piratería iba a la vez meyando el cine y las grandes salas con mezzanine empezaban a desaparecer lo mismo que las grandes tiendas de alquiler como Blockbuster. Hasta que creativamente, volvieron al rescate: aparecieron los multicines, el jueves del espectador y un listín mucho más amplio que abarcaba pelas europeas y una que otra asiática. Ya empezaba a trabajar y con ello la posibilidad de poder pagarme mis entradas. Luego vendría el festival El Cine de Lima; las visitas al cinema del Museo Central y las proyecciones en la universidad. Pronto me convertí en un consumidor de cine que asistía religiosamente cada semana a ver un estreno, un festival o exposición underground. Hasta que llegó el momento de salir del país y mis rutinas cinéfilas se vinieron a pique. Ahora, viviendo en India, el cine indio es el que está a mi alcance. Una industria tanto o mucho mas poderosa que la de Hollywood. Toda una nueva experiencia.

Viviendo fuera del país es usual que me pregunten por el cine en Perú o Latinoamérica. Aunque haya una buena producción, no hay una mejor distribución. Porque usualmente me preguntan y aunque no creo tener el mejor criterio cinematográfico, el siguiente post ofrece un menú de películas latinoamericanas que me encantaron y que hablan de Latinoamérica como promesa, como realidad y como una locura. No hay un orden importante y seguro me olvido de varias (aunque confieso que las cinco primeras, son mis favoritas). Se centran desde que empecé a ir al cine (aprox. 1992) hasta el momento que dejé de hacerlo (aprox. 2007). A disfrutar y conocer algo más de Latinoamérica. Seguro viene una segunda lista.

Habana Blues/Habana Blues (Cuba-2005).- The story of two young musicians -Ruy and Tito- in Cuba. Art versus commerce, nationalism versus globalism, and communism versus capitalism are touched through the film. Their lifes are excuses also to touch problems in Cuba such as poverty, lack of opportunities and migration. Excellent soundtrack with songs such as 'Arenas de Soledad' and 'En Todas Partes'.

Cidade de Deus/City of God (Brazil-2002).- Two boys from the same poor and violent neighborhood –Cidade de Deus- of Rio de Janeiro take two different paths: one become a photographer and the other a reckless drug dealer. Capture your attention since the first scene using constantly flashbacks.

Amores Perros/Dog’s Bitch (Mexico-2000).- Three different and independent histories that are connected by an car accident. The three histories are about the loves (amores), the dogs (perros) and the cruelty and violence of humans towards dogs and each other. Drama and hard scenes. Pay attention to the song 'Lucha de Gigantes'.

El Hijo de la Novia/Son of the Bride (Argentina-2001).- Excellent comedy with awesome and funny dialogues. At age 42, a minor heart attack forces Rafael to slow down and a reunion with Juan Carlos -a childhood friend- who helps Rafael to reconstruct his past and look at the present in new ways. Most importantly, when his father makes the decision to fulfill his mother's dream of getting married in a church, it gives Rafael a task to focus on; bringing the family together to create a new memory they can share. Wait until the end of the credits to discover who the enigmatic Watson is. If like it, you should see the Oscar winner 'The Secret in their Eyes' (2009) from the same director.

Machuca/Machuca (Chile-2004).- Pedro Machuca is a poor boy that is integrated into a elite school where he will meet a friend. This social project is the excuse to show the difference of classes in Chile in 1973 during the last days of Salvador Allende’s socialist government and before the Pinochet’s military cup. Dramatic episodes in the Chilean history are shown through the children's view.

Madeinusa (Peru-2005).- The story covers three days of a fictional festivity called Holy Time in the lives of the fictional indigenous Peruvian village. Holy Time is a religious festival spanning Good Friday and Eastern Sunday. The people of the village believe that during "Holy Time" God is dead and, therefore, nothing is a sin. The drama centers around the encounter of the eponymous Madeinusa, a teenaged girl selected as the festival's Inmaculate Virgin with Salvador, an stranger coming from Lima. If you like this movie, see 'The Milk of the Sorrow' that has won some film awards. As sometimes happen, some people believe that the movie gives a false and negative view of life in the highlands.

Días de Santiago/Days of Santiago (Peru-2005).- A 23-year-old war veteran returns to Lima after spending six years fighting terrorists, the Peruvian drug mafia, and a nationalist war against Ecuador. Unable to smoothly transition back home, his life starts to spin out of control.

Historias Mínimas/Minimal Stories (Argentina-2004).- Don Justo hands over the running of his grocery store to his overbearing son and daughter-in-law and escapes to search for his lost dog Badface. Roberto (Javier Lombardo) is a love-struck obsessive-compulsive traveling salesman who drives to San Julián to surprise one of his clients by bringing a cake for her son's birthday. Finally, María Flores (Javiera Bravo) travels to San Julián with her daughter because she has won a spot on "Multicoloured Casino," a fusty TV game show. The film captures a lot of small details that make a realistic and moving depiction of life in southern Argentina. If, like it, see Bombón, el Perro.

Conversaciones con Mamá/Conversations with Mother (Argentina-2004).- It is the story of a relationship between a middle-aged son and his elderly mother set against Argentina’s financial crisis of 2001. Jamie is an executive who suddenly finds himself without a job during the crisis. When the money crunch hits, Jamie’s wife decides that the best course to take is to sell the apartment currently occupied by Jamie’s elderly mother. When Jaime finally pins down his mother long enough to explain his financial dilemma, she refuses to move out of her apartment, citing the fact that her boyfriend -a ‘retired anarchist’ Gregorio- is moving in with her. Awesome dialogues and good combination of comedy and drama.

Carandiru/Carandiru (Brazil- 2003).- The doctor Varella starts an AIDS prevention campaign in Brazil's largest and overpopulated prison, Carandiru. There, the doc knows tragic stories of hideous crimes, passionate dramas and also decent people. Just when Varella believes to leave the prisoners happy with a soccer tournament, the fatality appears.

Lugares Comunes/Common Places (Argentina-2002).- In Buenos Aires, a few days before traveling to Spain with his beloved wife Liliana to visit their son Pedro, the leftist Literature professor Fernando Robles is compulsory retired in the University, and he concludes that it is impossible to live with his pension. The crisis in Argentina does not allow Fernando to get a new job, and his wife decides to sell her family's apartment and move to a small farm near Villa Dolores to reduce their expenses. Fernando comes up with the idea to grow lavender and sell the oil to the perfume industry. Discover some interesting speeches about meaning of education, communism, left wing and old age.

Y tú mamá también/And your mother too (Mexico-2001).- A road movie among two Mexican adolescents and one Spanish girls closing to the thirty years old. The sex is the main topic through the movie.

25 Watts/25 Watts (Uruguay-2001).- 24 hours in the life of three street youths in Montevideo that trying to survive until Sunday. They have a lot of problems regarding studies, girls, and their lives consist mostly of drinking or sleeping or meeting strange people like the crazy delivery boy, a retarded drug , and a counter clerk at a video rental store.

Tinta Roja (Peru-2000).- Peruvian college student Alfonso wants to be a writer more than anything. When he graduates, he gets a job at tabloid newspaper El Clamor. He wishes to be an entertainment reporter, but he is assigned to the crime beat, where he must right sensationalized accounts of real events. He finds out that the road to his dreams can be rocky when he must work with antagonistic veteran reporter, Faundez. If you like it, you must watch the best Lombardi’s film La Boca del Lobo/Mouth of the Wolf (Peru-1988) even someone would also suggests 'Pantaleon y las Visitadoras' o 'La Ciudad y los Perros'.

Nueve Reinas/Nine Queens (Argentina-2000).- What happens when two con artists meet apparently by chance and decide to cooperate in a scam?

Golpe de Estadio (Colombia-1999).- Hilarious movie placed in the middle of the Colombian jungle during the qualifying matches for the Football Word Cup of 1994. In middle of the war between the FARC and soldiers, the match between Colombia and Argentina is the only reason for an armistice. Incredible situations and funny scenes in a movie where the football joins and the war separates.

Garaje Olimpo/Olimpic Garage (Argentina-1999).- The picture is about a young politically active Argentine woman who is kidnapped by the Argentinean military forces in the late 1970s. She is taken to a torture center called Garage Olimpo in the middle of Buenos Aires. As soon as Maria is captured the film's mood becomes uncomfortable and the atmosphere is minimalist. The film is based on the real political events that took place in Argentina after Videla’s reactionary military junta assumed power in 1976.

Chacotero Sentimental (Chile-1999).- Independent histories that reveal life of people in Santiago. One in comedy terms, other in drama and finally a third is a tragic comedy. There is a second part with other histories.

Central do Brasil/Central Station (Brazil-1998).- An emotive journey of a former school teacher, who write letters for illiterate people, and a young boy, whose mother has just died, in search for the father he never knew.

Cenizas del Paraíso/Ashes of Paradise (Argentina-1997).- It tells in cutbacks how the untroubled private happiness of a family – a judge and his three grown-up sons – crumbles between loyalty and betrayal, blind trust and suspicions.

Martín (Hache)/Martin (Hache) (Argentina-1997).- The film focuses on the relationships between four diverse characters: Hache, a young who does not have any clear idea about what to do with his life; his quiet, cold and emotionally remote father (Martin); Martin’s friend who is an actor and self-professed Epicurean (Dante); and the outspoken and extroverted Martin’s girlfriend Alicia. After a drug overdose, Martin travels to Madrid where he will meet with his father, father’s friend and girlfriend in order to find a sense on his life.

Fresa y Chocolate/Strawberry and Chocolate (Cuba-1994).- Diego, a cultivated, homosexual and skeptical young man, falls in love with a young heterosexual communist full of prejudices and doctrinary ideas. First come rejection and suspicion, but also fascination. Fresa y chocolate is the story of a great friendship, that is, a great love between two men, which overcomes incomprehension and intolerance.

La Estrategia del Caracol/The Strategy of the Snail (Colombia- 1993).- Good drama-comedy. A lot of people live in an occupied house; after many years of quiet living, the owner of the house wants them out. They try whatever they can to avoid being put out, without success. But one of them thinks of a way of saving, at least, their dignity: The strategy of the snail.

Como Agua para el Chocolate/ Like Water for Chocolate (Mexico-1992).- It is a taste love-history set during the Mexican Revolution at the beginning of the XX century. In that sense, the conservative values, religiosity and strict norms play an important role during the film. The interesting in this movie is that there is a presence of magic-realism through the movie that connects the human feelings with the food.

Un Lugar en el Mundo/A place in the World (Uruguay-1992).- Mario and Ana, in voluntary exile from Buenos Aires, live in a remote Argentine valley with their 12-year-old son Ernesto. Mario runs a school and a wool cooperative; Ana, a doctor, heads a clinic with Nelda, a progressive nun. Into this idealistic family comes Hans, a jaded Spanish geological engineer -- surveying the land for the local patron, to see if it can be dammed for hydro-electric power, which would drive the peasants from the land into the cities.

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Blog donde se ofrece una mirada sobre temas politicos y sociales del Peru y Latinoamerica. Además Se relatan costumbres y aventuras vividas por el mundo, incluido un registro fotográfico del mismo.

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