For many Americans, the perception of immigration comes from films, which for the most part, are not made by immigrants. The films below offer a range–from El Norte, which is historically significant, to more current films that look at detainment. F
1) El Norte. Watch this film and you’ll understand why Gregory Nava emerged as a Hollywood great. This is one of the few films featuring Latin American immigrants to be archived by the Library of Congress.
2) Which Way Home is timely and timeless. Get a look at what immigration looks like for Latin American children. There are films that are accused of having an agenda.
3) Sin Nombre (English Subtitled) is a gut-wrenching film that follows the story of the desperation that comes from the attempt to get away from gangs.
4) Maria Full of Grace is one of the most intense films you would ever want to see about immigration. This film will help you understand the circumstances that drive individuals to desperate acts.
5) Under the Same Moon (English Subtitled) is a family film that captures the trials of what separation looks like. This film remains one of the most highest-rated films in this category in IMDB and Rotten Tomatoes.
6) Real Women Have Curves. This film challenges traditional thinking about women’s bodies and immigrant workers’ challenges and rights. Watch a young America Ferrera light up the screen and show the makings of a star even at a young age.
7) Kiko provides a look at what happens when the presence of ICE threatens and terrorizes individuals. This short is masterful in that it leaves you with questions. It’s ideal to invoke discussions on immigration.
8) Marisol provides a look at the support networks that are often necessary for the survival of undocumented families.
9) Icebox focuses on children stuck in ICE detention in the U.S. and the sobering realities they face. This film got a lot of press when it came out, and to a certain extent, it picks up where Which Way Home leaves off.
10) Food Chains will change the way you look at food in the U.S. as it looks at the role that immigrants play in the agricultural industry. COVID-19 reminded us that Latinos play a crucial role in bringing food to our tables, and this film helps explain how that has been true for much longer.