Argentine Movie Marathon: "Top 10 Argentine movies worth watching"

Oscar Night
Crossing fingers for Wild Tales tonight, which was nominated for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 87th Academy Awards. So far, Argentina won two Oscars. Argentina is the only Latin American country ever to even win an Oscar. Since 2001, a majority of the nominated films (seven out of fourteen) have starred Ricardo Darín in a leading role. Wild Tales (Relatos salvajes) is not an exception.

UPDATE: The Best Foreign Language Film at the 87th Academy Awards went to... "Ida" (Poland)

- Wild Tales (Relatos salvajes) – 2014

What is it about?
This black comedy-drama film written and directed by Damián Szifrón is an anthology film, composed of six standalone shorts united by a common theme of violence and vengeance.


This are my Top 10 selection of Argentine movies worth watching: Two things... Lets face it, foreign movies are not for everyone. If you watch movies because you don't like to read that much, foreign movies are not for you. All of these Argentine movies are subtitled, so it requires a lot of reading. Also, some times the subs are badly done... so... yeah. I've seen Argentine movies  dubbed into "neutral" Spanish! Argentine Spanish (AKA Castellano is a bit aggressive for non Argentines) and that takes me to my second thing... All of the following movies were rated R, becasue of bad translation... words like Boludo, or tarado were translated to F*** you, but it mostly meant "dude." Here we go:

1- The Secret in Their Eyes (El secreto de sus ojos)–2009
Winner of several awards, including the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film at the 82nd Academy Awards. There’s Hollywood adaptation of this film starting Nicole Kidman and Julia Roberts. Directed by Juan José Campanella.

What is it about?
The story unearths the buried romance between a retired judiciary employee and a judge who worked together a quarter century ago. They recount their efforts on an unsolved 1974 rape and murder that is an obsession not only for them, but for the victim's husband and the killer. The double setting frames the period of Argentina's Dirty War (1976–1983), a violent time when criminality often went unpunished. Rating: R (for a rape scene, violent images, some graphic nudity and language)

2- Nine Queens (Nueve Reinas)–2000
The film was nominated for 28 awards and won 21 of them, and is now considered a classic in the country's film history. There was a 2004 Hollywood adaptation “Criminal” starting Diego Luna.
Directed by Fabián Bielinsky.

What is it about?
The story centers on two con artists who meet and decide to cooperate in a major scam. Rating: R (for language)

3- Un Oso Rojo (Red Bear) –2002
Directed by Israel Adrián Caetano.

What is it about?
Red Bear centers on a recently released ex convict trying to reconnect with lost relationships. Rating: R (for language)

4- Chinese Take-Away (Un cuento chino) –2011
Argentine humor at its best. The film was the highest grossing non-US film in Argentina in 2011.Directed by Sebastián Borensztein.

What is it about?
OCD, Roberto, believes he has his life under control and is safe from surprises. Life prove him wrong with a Chinese surprise. Rating: R (for language)

5- On Probation (Tiempo de valientes) –2005
Comedy film written and directed by Damián Szifrón.

What is it about?
Following a traffic accident, a high-strung psychoanalyst is assigned to community service, accompanying an overweight, depressed cop on his rounds. The pair are assigned to investigate the brutal murders of two petty criminals. Rating: R (for language)

6- Waiting for the Hearse (Esperando la carroza) –1985
This classic of Argentine movies is ridiculously awesome. It is considered a cult film. 100% Argentine humor and slang. Directed by Alejandro Doria

What is it about?
This comedy satirizes Latin American soap operas in following a dysfunctional family.
Rating: R (for language)

7- Son of the Bride (El hijo de la novia) –(2001)
The film was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film and won the Silver Condor for Best Film.

What is it about?
A family wedding brings out the best and the worst in the various parties involved in this warm but pointed comedy-drama. Rating: R (for language)

8- The Motorcycle Diaries (Diarios de motocicleta) –2004
Based primarily on Guevara's travelogue of the same name

What is it about?
about the journey and written memoir of the 23-year-old Ernesto Guevara, who would several years later become internationally known as the iconic Marxist guerrilla commander and revolutionary Che Guevara. Rating: R (for language)

9- Ashes of Paradise (Cenizas del Paraíso) –1997
The film won several awards, among them a renowned Goya Award, for Best Spanish Language Foreign Film. It was Argentina's official submission for the 1997 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film ("Oscar"), but did not receive a nomination for the award.

What is it about?
The film tells in flashbacks 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. Rating: R (for language)

10- The Official Story (La historia oficial)–1985
Among several other international awards, it won the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film at the 58th Academy Awards.

What is it about?
The film deals with the story of an upper middle class couple who lives in Buenos Aires with an illegally adopted child. The mother comes to realize that her daughter may be the child of a desaparecido, a victim of the forced disappearances that occurred during Argentina's last military dictatorship (1976-1983), which was marred by widespread human rights violations and a genocide. Rating: R (adult situations/language, violence)
Have I missed any? 

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