Cinema of Puerto Rico

Latin American cinema
The history of film in Puerto Rico begins with the US invasion of the island in 1898. At that time, the American soldiers brought cameras to record what they saw. It wasn't until the 1912 that Puerto Ricans would begin to produce their own films.

After this, Puerto Rican cinema has developed at a slow pace. Despite this, the industry has produced several renowned actors and actresses, and so far one Academy Award nominated film (see List of Puerto Rican Academy Award winners and nominees).

In the late 90s and during the new millennium, the Puerto Rican film industry has seen a significant growth with the amount of local productions increasing each year.

Early years: 1912-1950

After the early images recorded by the American soldiers in 1898, most of the films produced in the island were documentaries. It wasn't until 1912 that Rafael Colorado D'Assoy recorded the first non-documentary film titled Un drama en Puerto Rico. After that, Colorado and Antonio Capella Martínez created the Film Industrial Society of Puerto Rico in 1916, producing their first film titled Por la hembra y el gallo. Other film companies formed during the time were the Tropical Film Company (1917) and the Porto Rico Photoplays (1919).

In 1934, Juan Viguié Cajas produced and directed the first Puerto Rican film with sound titled, Romance Tropical. There is little known of the whereabouts of this film or the ones mentioned above.

The 1950s to 1970s

The first truly Puerto Rican film, 1953's Los Peloteros, featured a Puerto Rican cast and was based on a real story. Ramón Rivero (a.k.a. Diplo) starred as the inspirational coach of a children's baseball team. His impoverished team played with old, broken equipment and longed for uniforms. Known as a comedian, the role enabled Rivera to demonstrate his dramatic abilities. The children in the movie were not professional actors; they actually were poor children cast at the shooting locale. Photographer Jack Delano directed the film for the Puerto Rican government's Division of Community Education. Some consider Los Peloteros to be the best Puerto Rican film ever made.

Three films were shot in Puerto Rico in the 1950s. Two were Puerto Rican, the musical drama El Otro Camino (1955), and the drama/romance Maruja (1958). Axel Anderson, a German ex-patriate who became a star in both Puerto Rican television and film. In Maruja, Anderson played opposite leading lady, Marta Romero, and in El Otro Camino he played opposite Rosaura Andreu, future children's television host. The third movie was the American film noir Man With My Face (1951), a thriller centering on Americans living in Puerto Rico.

Within the 1960s, an explosion of filmmaking aroused on the island. About half of the films shot in this period were co-productions between Puerto Rico and Mexico. Mexico also shot a few stand-alone productions, plus a few co-productions with Spain and Venezuela. Puerto Rico hosted a sizable number of U.S. movies throughout the decade, plus one from Argentina and one from the United Kingdom. Although none of the movies from this period received wide critical acclaim, director Leopoldo Torre Nilsson was nominated for the Golden Palm award at the Cannes Film Festival for his work on La Chica del Lunes in 1967. Also notable are the Bob Hope comedy The Private Navy of Sgt. O'Farrell in 1968 and a film adaptation of William Golding's novel Lord of the Flies.

Filmmaking in the 1970s, slowed down substantially. Among the handful of Puerto Rican pictures (mostly co-productions), only the Jacobo Morales film Dios los Cría (1979) stands out. Morales had a solid background as an actor and writer, going back to the inception of Puerto Rican television in the 1950s. Dios los Cria marked the beginning of his work writing and directing for the big screen. The collection of five comedic tales earned him acclaim.

The U.S. produced more films in Puerto Rico in the 1970s than any other country did. Most of them were schlock movies typical of the time, such as producer Sydney W. Pink's last movie The Man From O.R.G.Y. in 1970. The Woody Allen film Bananas, of 1971, is the only classic American film of the time. Jacobo Morales played a supporting role on the film.

The 1980s to present

Following up on his previous success, Morales has continued to write and direct his own films. Nicolas y los Demas (1986) and Lo que le Pasó a Santiago (1989) both won audience appreciation. In addition, the latter received an Oscar nomination for Best Foreign Film. In 1994, he directed Linda Sara which didn't earn as much respect as his earlier works, although it's generally considered enjoyable. In 2004 he released a sequel to his 1979 hit, Dios los Cria 2.

During the 80s, Puerto Rican began submitting films for consideration to the Academy Award for Best Foreign Film. Some of the films submitted were La Gran Fiesta and the above mentioned Lo que le Pasó a Santiago. Despite this efforts, the industry wasn't booming like before.

In the 1990s, another filmmaking boom began. The number of films made by Puerto Ricans has increased dramatically. So has the variety, including documentaries, short films, and animation. 2004's Voces Inocentes, co-produced by Mexico/Puerto Rico/U.S., won several international awards. Both the Puerto Rico Film Commission and the Corporation for the Development of Arts, Science and Film Industry in Puerto Rico promote local and international film making, including loans and financial incentives. Unfortunately people in Puerto Rico see this films as Art House material and they don't get the Box Office reception as many American mainstream films.

Other recent films that have garnered praise are Héroes de Otra Patria, Cayo, Jacobo Morales' Angel, and Maldeamores.

Partial list of Puerto Rican films

  • Absolution, The (1998)
  • Adios, New York, adios (1973)
  • Agua con sal (2005)
  • Al compas de un sentimiento (1996)
  • Alicia Alonso y El Ballet Nacional de Cuba (1979)
  • Alien Predator (1987)
  • Aljuriya (2004)
  • Amores como todos los demas (1999) (TV)
  • Angel (2003/I)
  • Angelito mío (1998)
  • Anillo, El (2004)
  • Antesala de la silla eléctrica (1968)
  • Archipiélago (2003)
  • Una Aventura Llamada Menudo (1982)
  • Casi Casi (2006)
  • El Clown (2006)
  • Conexión Caribe (1984)
  • Paging Emma (1999)
  • Ladrones y Mentirosos (2006)

See also

References

Latin American cinema refers collectively to the film output and film industries of Latin America. Latin American film is both rich and diverse. But the main centers of production have been Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, and Cuba.
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Cinema of Argentina has a long tradition dating back to the late nineteenth century, and has played an important role in the Culture of Argentina for more than a century.
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Brazilian cinema has more recently sparked attention overseas thanks to the success of films like Central Station (Central do Brasil) and
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Cinema of Colombia (Spanish: Cine de Colombia) or Colombian Cinema (Spanish: Cine colombiano) refers to the historic evolution of cinematography in Colombia.
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Golden Age (Decada de Oro) for the Cuban cinema, most of all because of the making of Lucía (1969) by Humberto Solás and Memorias del subdesarrollo (1968) by Tomás Gutiérrez Alea.
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Mexican cinema goes back to the beginning of the 20th century, when several enthusiasts of the new medium documented historical events – most particularly the Mexican Revolution – and produced some movies that have been only recently been rediscovered.
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Cinema of Paraguay is small compared to that of neighbouring Argentina & Brazil. However, this has begun to change in recent years with films like O Toque do Oboé (1998), María Escobar (2002) and Hamaca Paraguaya
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Peruvian film industry has not been nearly as prolific as that of some other Latin American countries, such as Mexico or Argentina, some Peruvian movies produced with the cooperation of Mexican talent in the 1960s and 1970s, such as Bromas S.A., enjoyed regional success.
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Latin American cinema refers collectively to the film output and film industries of Latin America. Latin American film is both rich and diverse. But the main centers of production have been Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, and Cuba.
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Motto
Latin: Joannes Est Nomen Eius
Spanish: Juan es su nombre
(English: "John is his name")
Anthem
"La Borinqueña"
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The history of Puerto Rico began with the settlement of the archipelago of Puerto Rico by the Ortoiroid people between 3000 and 2000 BC. Other tribes, such as the Saladoid and Arawak Indians, populated the island between 430 BC and 1000 AD.
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Motto
"In God We Trust"   (since 1956)
"E Pluribus Unum"   ("From Many, One"; Latin, traditional)
Anthem
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camera is a device used to capture images, as still photographs or as sequences of moving images (movies or videos). The term as well as the modern-day camera evolved from the camera obscura
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19th century - 20th century - 21st century
1880s  1890s  1900s  - 1910s -  1920s  1930s  1940s
1909 1910 1911 - 1912 - 1913 1914 1915

Year 1912 (MCMXII
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Puerto Rican
Puertorriqueño

Notable Puerto Ricans:
Ricky Martín  • Luis Muñoz Rivera  • Benicio del Toro

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Note: When del Toro and Phoenix were nominated by the Academy for Best Supporting Actor in 2000, it was the first time that two actors born in Puerto Rico were simultaneously nominated for such an honor.
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Centuries: 1st century BC - 1st century - 2nd century

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Note: Sometimes the '90s

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1895 1896 1897 - 1898 - 1899 1900 1901

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Subjects:     Archaeology - Architecture -
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Documentary film is a broad category of visual expression that is based on the attempt, in one fashion or another, to "document" reality. Although "documentary film" originally referred to movies shot on film stock, it has subsequently expanded to include video and digital
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19th century - 20th century - 21st century
1880s  1890s  1900s  - 1910s -  1920s  1930s  1940s
1909 1910 1911 - 1912 - 1913 1914 1915

Year 1912 (MCMXII
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A documentary is a creative work of non-fiction, including:
  • Documentary film, including television
  • Radio documentary
  • Documentary photography
Related terms include:
  • Documentary Center
  • Documentary Channel and
  • Documentary comedy

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19th century - 20th century - 21st century
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19th century - 20th century - 21st century
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Year 1917 (MCMXVII
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19th century - 20th century - 21st century
1880s  1890s  1900s  - 1910s -  1920s  1930s  1940s
1916 1917 1918 - 1919 - 1920 1921 1922

Year 1919 (MCMXIX
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19th century - 20th century - 21st century
1900s  1910s  1920s  - 1930s -  1940s  1950s  1960s
1931 1932 1933 - 1934 - 1935 1936 1937

Year 1934 (MCMXXXIV
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Puerto Rican
Puertorriqueño

Notable Puerto Ricans:
Ricky Martín  • Luis Muñoz Rivera  • Benicio del Toro

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Ramón Rivero (May 29, 1909 - August 24, 1956) — better known as Diplo — was a comedian and actor from Nagüabo, Puerto Rico.

Biography

Ramón Rivero was baptized as Arturo Ramón Máximo Ortiz del Rivero
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Jack Delano (August 1, 1914 – August 12, 1997) was an American photographer for the Farm Security Administration (FSA) and a composer noted for his use of Puerto Rican folk material.
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19th century - 20th century - 21st century
1920s  1930s  1940s  - 1950s -  1960s  1970s  1980s
1952 1953 1954 - 1955 - 1956 1957 1958

Year 1955 (MCMLV
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19th century - 20th century - 21st century
1920s  1930s  1940s  - 1950s -  1960s  1970s  1980s
1955 1956 1957 - 1958 - 1959 1960 1961

Year 1958 (MCMLVIII
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