It’s that time of the year once again when Hollywood celebrities arrive in New York City with their deluge of entourages and their publicists, managers and agents in tow to celebrate their new film projects at the 14th annual Tribeca Film Festival. It’s a week of partying, prattling and quaffing that began Wednesday and continues through the 26th. The majority of the festival’s lineup are U.S. productions and Tribec historically has supported Latin independent cinema.
Here then are 14 movies that feature a Latino story, director or actor which you may want to watch for this year with synopses provided by the studio.
Mojave (USA) Drama, Thriller
Director: William Monahan
Runtime: 93 minutes
Cast: Oscar Isaac, Garrett Hedlund, Dania Ramirez, Mark Wahlberg
William Monahan’s second feature, starring Oscar Isaac and Garrett Hedlund, is a delirious trip from the fringes of the desert to the center of the film industry. Armed with little more than a knife and two handles of vodka, an on-edge Hollywood director sets out to the Mojave Desert, where he finds a drifter brandishing a rifle and claiming to be the Devil.
Scherzo Diabolico (Mexico) Horror, Thriller
Director: Adrián García Bogliano
Runtime: 91 minutes
Cast: Francisco Barreiro, Daniela Soto Vell, Jorge Molina, Milena Pezzi, Vita Vargas
For those who might be unfamiliar with the title, “Scherzo Diabolico" is the third of the Études in the minor keys, Op. 39 for solo piano by the French composer Charles-Valentin Alkan. In this twisted Mexican black comedy, a game of cat and mouse to be frank, director Adrián García Bogliano tells a story of a wearied accountant who breaks his mild-mannered routine when he kidnaps a young woman. What starts as a carefully calculated plan soon crescendos into his worst nightmare.
Go, Sebastien, Go - Short Film, Documentary
Director: Eva Longoria
Executive producer Eva Longoria has teamed up with ESPN Films on a series of shorts which explore moments in sports history that shine a light on personal perseverance. This short doc is about the young singer Sebastien de la Cruz, whose rendition of the national anthem before Game 3 of the 2013 NBA Finals ignited racial tweets and hate filled comments _ thrusting him into the national immigration reform debate.
The Kiss (Mexico) Short Film, Romantic Comedy
Director: Carlos G. Davila
Runtime: 12 minutes
Cast: Ana Gonzalez Bello, Roberto Cavazos
Daniel just wants an honest, sober appraisal of how he kisses. Ale is unconvinced. Is a kiss between friends ever 'just a kiss'? What was meant to be a quiet night in doing laundry quickly becomes a thorough deconstruction of Ale and Daniel's friendship.
Viaje (Costa Rica) Romantic Comedy
Director: Paz Fábrega
Runtime: 70 minutes
Cast: Kattia Gonzalez, Fernando Bolaños
After meeting at a party, Luciana and Pedro spark up a spontaneous rendezvous when Luciana accompanies Pedro to a national forest on a work trip. Eschewing the fraudulent nature of traditional relationships, the pair explores the beauty in the nature that surrounds them as they indulge in the passions of their encounter and navigate the various meanings of commitment.
Bare (USA) Drama
Runtime: 88 minutes
Directed and written: Natalia Leite (Latina filmmaker)
Cast: Dianna Agron, Paz de la Huerta, Chris Zylka, Louisa Krause
Sarah’s (Dianna Agron) mundane life in a Nevada desert town is turned upside down with the arrival of Pepper (Paz de la Huerta), a mysterious female drifter, who leads her into a life of seedy strip clubs and illicit drugs. Their passion inspires Sarah to break free of her past and seek out a new life of her own.
El Cinco (Argentina) Drama, Comedy
Director: Adrián Biniez
Runtime: 101 minutes
Cast: Diego Mattioli, Néstor Guzzini, Esteban Lamothe
Patón, with his fiery temper and aggressive play, is the veteran star of his city’s soccer team. When his transgressions land him a lengthy suspension, he considers retirement, while discovering a world that consists of more than just feet and fists. This coming-of-middle-age tale reveals the predicament of leaving the arena where you most feel at home.
Aloft (Spain) Drama
Director: Claudia Llosa
Runtime: 97 minutes
Cast: Jennifer Connelly, Cillian Murphy, Melanie Laurent, William Shimell
In parallel narratives, single-mother Nana (Jennifer Connelly) has a mysterious experience at the hands of a traveling healer, years later her troubled son Ivan (Cillian Murphy) sets out in search of his now absent mother. Academy Award®–nominee Claudia Llosa’s (The Milk of Sorrow) decade-spanning family drama is a dreamlike rumination on faith, forgiveness, and family, set against an otherworldly frozen landscape. A Sony Pictures Classics Release.
Cartel Land (Mexico) Documentary
Director: Matthew Heinemann
Runtime: 100 minutes
A portrait of two men, both leaders of small paramilitary groups that police different sides of the Mexican drug war: one in the southern U.S. and the other in Michoacan, deep inside Mexico. With unprecedented access, this film brings forward deep questions about the breakdown of order and entanglement of modern-day vigilante movements at a time when the government cannot provide basic security for its people. In Spanish and English with subtitles.
Havana Motor Club (Cuba) Sports, Documentary
Director: Bent-Jorgen Perlmutt
Runtime: 84 minutes
Cast: Armando Lorenzo Munnet, Reynaldo López García, Reinaldo López Fernández, Eduardo Hernández, Carlos Alvarez, Jose Antonio Madera, Milton Díaz Cánter
Punctuated by a lively Cuban soundtrack, Havana Motor Club captures a nation at a crossroads. Changing international relationships and economic reforms have offered unprecedented opportunity to Cubans, but left the children of the Revolution unsure of the best route forward. For the half-dozen racers at the heart of Perlmutt’s film, this means last-minute adjustments or wholesale changes to their beloved cars, as they prepare for the first sanctioned drag race in Cuba since 1960.
Lucifer (Mexico) Drama
Director: Gust Van den Berghe
Runtime: 108 minutes
Cast: Gabino Rodriguez, Norma Pablo, María Toral Acosta, Jerónimo Soto Bravo, Sergio Lazaro Cortéz
After being banished from heaven, an angel begins his descent to hell, only to unexpectedly land in a Mexican village where his newfound presence affects the villagers in strange and surprising ways. Inspired by the notorious biblical story, Lucifer is a mesmerizing, moving, and imaginative re-envisioning of the notorious biblical story, presented in director Gust van den Berghe’s own innovative aspect ratio, Tondoscope.
Gored (USA) Documentary, spoken in Spanish
Director: Ido Mizrahy
Runtime: 76 minutes
Known as the “Most Gored Bullfighter in History,” Antonio Barrera has been stabbed 23 times by his horned adversary. In this detailed documentary, Barrera grapples with the end of his career. Captivating footage of past and present bullfights reveal Barrera’s tremendous passion for the sport, as well as his seemingly irresistible urge to confront death at every opportunity.
Thought Crimes (USA) Documentary
Director: Erin Lee Carr
Runtime: 82 minutes
Convicted yet then acquitted of conspiring to kidnap, rape, kill, and eat several women, NYPD officer Gilberto Valle quickly rose to infamy as New York's own "Cannibal Cop". With exclusive access to Valle, Erin Lee Carr's unflinching documentary asks a fundamental question that challenges our beliefs about the criminal justice system, and even the very nature of right and wrong: can you be guilty of a crime you only thought about committing?
Stung (USA) Horror, Comedy
Director: Benni Diez (Latino filmmaker)
Runtime: 87 minutes
Cast: Matt O’Leary, Jessica Cook, Lance Henriksen, Eve Slatner, Clifton Collins Jr.
For catering staffers Paul and Julia, Mrs. Perch’s fancy garden party at her remote country villa is nothing out of the ordinary. A mishap with toxic plant fertilizer leads to the most unwelcome of dinner guests: giant killer wasps. Director Benni Diez takes audiences on a thrilling, gory rollercoaster ride from campy to creepy, in this delightful and dreadful creature-feature.