Top Movies and Documentaries that will help you understand Mexico

Cartel Land (2015) Documentary

In the Mexican state of Michoacan, Dr. Jose Mireles incites people to rebel against the brutal drug mafia. Meanwhile, in Arizona, Tim “Nailer” Foley, an American veteran, heads a paramilitary group that aims to stop drug cartels from entering the southwestern United States. In his documentary Matthew Heineman shows people who, when all institutions fail, decide to bring justice themselves.

Narco Cultura (2013) Documentary

A surreal documentary film by award – winning photojournalist Shaul Schwarz that investigates the parallels between the Mexican drug war and the increasingly popular musical style of narcocorridos (drug ballads).

Made In Mexico  (Hecho en Mexico) (2012) Documentary

Hecho en Mexico (Made in Mexico) is an inspiring documentary that uses Mexican contemporary and folkloric sounds to portray the country’s rich and diverse culture and history.

Rick Stein’s Road to Mexico 2017-2018 (Documentary and TV

50 years later Rick Stein retraces his 1968 journey down the Pacific Coast Highway to the Mexican border, enjoying unique dishes and meeting local chefs.

Mexico: Earth’s Festival of Life Documentary

A three part BBC documentary series exploring the diverse peoples, wildlife, landscape and culture of Mexico.  It focuses on three distinct worlds, great mountain ranges, tropical forests and scorching deserts.

World’s Busiest Cities: Mexico City (2017) Documentary, History

In BBC‘s World’s Busiest Cities episode on Mexico City, reporters uncover the struggles of running Mexico City, a massive metropolis with estimated population of almost 22 million people.

Alamar (2009) Documentary

Alamar (To the Sea) a semi – documentary film by  Pedro González-Rubio that follows Jorge, a young man of Mayan roots, and Natan, his half-Italian son, who spend time together living off the Banco Chinchorro coral reef.

Amores Perros (2000) Drama/Thriller

Amores Perros is a 2000 Mexican drama thriller directed by Alejandro González Iñárritu and written by Guillermo Arriaga. A tragic car accident  brings together the lives of three very different people from Mexico City.

Roma (2018) Drama

Drama film written and directed by Alfonso Cuarón. The film is loosely based on Cuaron’s recollections of his upbringing in Mexico in the early 1970s. It tells a story of Cleo, a middle-class family’s maid in Mexico City.

Sin Nombre (2009) Drama

El Casper, a member of the notorious Mexican gang Mara Salvatrucha, is trying to escape his violent past when he meets a young Honduran girl Sayra an illegal immigrant who  travels on the roofs of trains from Honduras to the country of great hopes – the USA.

The Crime of Padre
Amaro (2002) Drama

Drama film loosely based on the novel O Crime do Padre Amaro (1875) by José Maria de Eça de Queiroz. A newly-ordained priest Amaro arrives to a provincial town in Mexico to help Benito, an aging local priest. Amaro quickly discovers that Benito has a mistress and is involved in money laundry for local drug barons. Soon, Father Amaro himself will succumb to temptation.

Frida (2002) Biopic Drama

The film depicts private and professional life  of one of Mexico’s greatest surrealist artist  Frida Kahlo and her husband Diego Rivera. Starring Salma Hayek and Alfred Molina.

Desierto  (2015) Drama, Thriller

Jonás Cuarón’s film touches on the controversial topic of illegal immigration from Mexico to the USA. A group of Mexican migrant workers seeking better life is trying to cross the border from Mexico into the United States, when they encounter a man who has taken border patrol duties into his own racist hands.


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