Hispanic Heritage Series announced

The Department of Modern Languages at the University of Mississippi is pleased to announce the second Hispanic Heritage Series of films this fall semester as part of the celebrations honoring the Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15- October 15). The series consists of five contemporary films from Spanish-speaking countries.  “This series aims to promote an understanding of our global community", Carmen Sánchez, one of the three organizers, emphasized.


All films have English subtitles. They will be shown on the University of Mississippi campus, in the building next to the new Pavilion. The films are free and open to the public on the following Thursdays at 6pm at the Fedex Center in the Auditorium (room 200).  See the trailers at Pragda.com. For more information, please contact: Prof. Diane E. Marting, dmarting@olemiss.edu


“After our success last year, we wanted to bring more films to campus. There is such a diversity of peoples and cultures in Spanish America and in these films one can see a little bit of that variety,” said Marting. Irene Kaufmann, the third organizer, added: “We are happy to offer the opportunity to access these films, that would otherwise not be available to our community."


            The first film, “Chico y Rita,” is animated and features Cuban music and American jazz. Oscar®-winning director Fernando Trueba (The Age Of Beauty) and famous Barcelona designer and artist Javier Mariscal, have teamed up to make Chico & Rita, an animated love story starring the music, culture, and people of Cuba. Chico is a dashing piano player and Rita is an enchanting and beautiful Havana nightclub singer. An epic romance unfolds as the pair travels the glamorous stages of 1940s/1950s Havana, New York City, Las Vegas, Hollywood, and Paris.


Based on the actual events of a 1994 bombing in Buenos Aires, winner at many film festivals, the second film, God’s Slave follows Ahmed, trained since childhood as an Islamic terrorist now assigned to execute a suicide bomb at a synagogue; and David, the cold-blooded Israeli special agent who will stop at nothing to prevent the attack. But neither man is defined solely by their extremist views. Ahmed, posing as a doctor, lives happily with his wife and young son; though David’s marriage is on the rocks, he remains devoted to his wife and daughter. With time running out before the attack, David zeros in on Ahmed as a suspect, his investigation culminating in violent, if unexpected, consequences.


“Ixcanul, Volcano” was Guatemala’s official entry to the academy awards®. Maria, a 17-year-old Mayan girl, lives and works with her parents on a coffee plantation in the foothills of an active volcano in Guatemala. An arranged marriage awaits her: her parents have promised her to Ignacio, the plantation overseer. But Maria doesn’t sit back and accept her destiny. “Ixcanul is director Jayro Bustamante’s first feature. It is a story that takes place in the heart of a Kaqchikel Mayan community in contemporary times, and is a favorite with younger audiences.


The most expensive Latin American film ever produced, The Liberator is a riveting portrayal of the man who led Venezuela, Colombia, Panama, Peru, and Ecuador toward independence, Simon Bolivar. The Liberator was shortlisted with other eight titles for the Best Foreign Academy Award. Rising Venezuelan actor Edgar Ramírez stars in this biopic of one of Latin America’s greatest figures. Simón Bolívar fought over 100 battles against the Spanish Empire in South America. He rode over 70,000 miles on horseback. His military campaigns covered twice the territory of those of Alexander the Great. But his army never conquered – it liberated.


The final film in the series is Everybody Leaves is a celebration of freedom and a confrontation of the authoritarian Cuban regime of the 1980s, which led to one of the country’s worst economic crises. This film is based on the award-winning novel of the same name by Cuban writer Wendy Guerra. Eight-year-old Nieve is the object of her parents’ custody battle. propaganda in a remote area of the country. Through her diary entries, Nieve reveals intimate details of a turbulent family life while painting a portrait of the social and political unrest in Cuba during a difficult time for the Castro regime.


Dates for the screening of the films are as follows:    

29 September




Directed by Fernando Trueba, Javier Mariscal, Tono Errando (Spain, United Kingdom)

6  October


Dir. Joel Novoa (Argentina, Uruguay, Venezuela)

13 October


Dir. Jayro Bustamante (Guatemala)

10 November


Dir. Albert Arvelo (Spain, Venezuela)

17 November


Dir. Sergio Cabrera (Colombia)


The Hispanic Heritage Series is made possible with the support of Pragda, the Spanish Film Club.com, SPAIN Arts & Culture, and the Secretary of State for the Culture of Spain. Our local major sponsors are: The Department of Modern Languages, The Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College, The Center for Inclusion and Cross-Cultural Engagement, and Alpha Lambda Delta. Other local sponsors include: Cinema, The College of Liberal Arts, English, The Croft Institute for International Studies, the Arch Dalrymple III Department of History, The FedEx Student-Athlete Academic Support Center, Political Science, The Sarah Isom Center for Gender and Women’s Studies, and Sociology and Anthropology.