Cine Latino: 10 Hispanic Films at Toronto You Should Know About

Cine Latino: 10 Hispanic Films at Toronto You Should Know About

Sep 07, 2012

 Cine Latino covers, well, all things relating to Latino culture and the movies, every Friday.

With over 300 films from over 60 countries screening at the Toronto International Film Festival, already in full swing until September 16, it's no surprise that Hispanic filmmakers and actors are a big presence on the scene with narratives from Chile, Mexico, Spain, Colombia, Argentina and many more.

Here are some noteworthy films created by Hispanic filmmakers and/or featuring Hispanic talent that should be on your radar.


Mexican actor Gael García Bernal plays a young Chilean business executive who is recruited to launch a political campaign against Dictator Auguto Pinochet in this 1980s political thriller. After ruling as dictator for over two decades, Pinochet yielded to international pressures and held a public voting session. It allowed Chileans the power to determine its country's leader for the first time in decades. The ballot read: "Yes," extend Pinochet's term or "No," Pinochet no more. No concludes director Pablo Larrain's trilogy on the fall of General Pinochet that began with Tony Manero and Post Mortem

Everybody Has a Plan

First-time filmmaker Ana Piterbarg brings a Spanish-language thriller to life with the help of Viggo Mortensen, who plays a deadly set of twin Argentinian brothers. This is Mortensen's third Spanish-language film and his immersive exploration of two corrupt men in search of freedom has critics calling it a tour-de-force performance.

End of Watch

From the director that brought us Training Day, David Ayer returns to the big screen with End of Watch. The crime-fighting drama follows two up-and-coming police officers (Jake Gyllenhaal, Michael Peña), who naively go after ruthless drug-friendly gangsters from South Central L.A.  America Ferrera and Cody Horn join the cast.

White Elephant

Acclaimed Argentinian director Pablo Trapero returns to TIFF (after 2010's Carancho) with White Elephant, a drama that completes a trilogy of films exploring Argentina's darkest corners. Lion’s Den exposed the conditions of incarcerated women facing motherhood, while Carancho shed light on insurance fraud, and his latest centers around two Catholic priests who desperately try to face off drug lords, corrupt police officers and even their own demons as they try to help a Buenos Aires slum.

The Impossible

Spanish director Juan Antonio Bayona attempts to re-create the catastrophic Indian Ocean tsunami that struck eight years ago, killing approximately 283,000 people, in The Impossible starring Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor. The 9.0 magnitude quake had the energy of 23,000 atomic bombs, which resulted in killer waves smashing into 11 Indian Ocean countries from Africa to Thailand. For this film, one of the fest's most anticipated, Bayona reassembled the dream team that brought us The Orphanage and him to international fame. He uses 3D sound technology to immerse audiences in one of the most terrifying of natural disasters.

Night Across the Street

Considered by many one of the world's most distinctive film voices, the late Chilean filmmaker Ral Ruiz looks back at his childhood memories as he anticipates his own death in Night Across the Street, his last film of over a hundred he directed. The melancholic memoir is already being called a masterpiece. TIFF will also be screening The Lines of Wellington, a film Ruiz was working on just before his death, directed by his wife Valeria Sarmiento.


Come Out And Play

Children in a creepy setting can certainly scare the living day lights out of anyone. Such is the case in Come Out and Play, the latest feature film by Makinov. Yes, we don't know the real identity of this filmmaker; he's currently going incognito after what he calls a near-death experience. The story is set in Mexico on a remote island populated only by children, who turn a couple's sunny vacation into a bloodbath.

The Master

With so few details known but  so much positive buzz around the Web, it's easily one of the most anticipated films of the year. Paul Thomas Anderson hasn't directed a film since 2007's There Will Be Blood and his latest film project The Master, starring Puerto Rican actor Joaquin Phoenix, has Oscar written all over it. Phoenix plays a WWII veteran who befriends a religious leader (Philip Seymour Hoffman). The film is loosely based on Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard's life and experiences.

The Place Beyond the Pines

Cuban-American actress Eva Mendes joins Ryan Gosling and Bradley Cooper in this multi-generational crime drama from director Derek Cianfrance. Earlier this year, Mendes shared with us her experience with director Cianfrance. "I’m such a huge fan of his. I’ve never worked like how he works. He’s incredibly intense and I was so creatively excited to work with him," said Mendes. Gosling, who is currently dating Mendes, plays a motorcycle stunt rider whose moonlighting gig may cost him his freedom.

Ghost Graduation

This lighthearted comedy explores the paranormal with plenty of laugh-out-loud moments. Set in Spain, a high school teacher is faced with a couple of unique students. They're, um, dead. The ghostly '80s-era teens have some unfinished business: passing their final exam.

Which of these would you see? Tell us below!

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