Everyone knows about the works of Alfonso Cuarón and Guillermo del Toro nowadays, but there are plenty of other great Spanish language movies out there. From classics to modern-day masterpieces, here are some of my favorites.
1. The Young and the Damned (1950)
Directed by Luis Buñuel, this is one of the finest coming-of-age films of all time. It focuses on the story as old as time where an innocent child is corrupted by gang life and the harshness of reality. It gives the viewer an unflinching glimpse into the horrible poverty of Mexico, and it’s definitely worth watching for those who like their cinema to hit hard.
2. The Exterminating Angel (1962)
Also directed by Buñuel, this is a black comedy satirizing social structure. Of course there are plenty of films like that, but not with this level of bleakness. The camerawork is absolutely phenomenal, especially considering the film’s small scale.
3. El Topo (1970)
Alejandro Jordorowsky’s second feature film, this is a surreal psychological horror masked as a spaghetti western. It’s definitely gained quite the cult following over the years, mostly due to its brilliant pacing and disturbing appeal. If you can stomach some bizarre stuff, give this a shot.
4. The Holy Mountain (1973)
Widely considered to be Jordorowsky’s best film, this one is even more artistic and more perplexing than El Topo. I strongly believe that everyone who’s interested in this one-of-a-kind experience should head in completely blind, although it’s certainly not for everyone.
5. The Wolf House (2018)
The debut film from directors Joaquin Cociña and Cristóbal León, This is a horrific yet powerful stop-motion work that tells the events of Colonia Dignidad—a compound in Chile known for housing a cult that performed some truly horrific acts. This is another extremely disturbing and powerful film, but it also ranks among the most creative pieces of animation out there.