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Do these Latinx movies deserve to be in the National Film Registry?

Original L.A. Times Article: By Fidel Martinez, Los Angeles Times Audience Engagement Editor March 11, 2021 8 AM PT

The Congressional Hispanic Caucus submitted 25 movies it says should be included in the National Film Registry.

According to the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, the National Film Registry needs more Latinx movies. For the unfamiliar, the registry is a list of “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant films” picked by the Library of Congress’ National Film Preservation Board. The 775-movie list is intended to encapsulate America’s film heritage and history. It includes movies like “The Wizard of Oz,” “North by Northwest” and “Die Hard.” It also only includes 17 Latinx films — “La Bamba,” “Stand and Deliver” and “Buena Vista Social Club” among them.

The Congressional Hispanic Caucus doesn’t think this is enough. In January, it petitioned that “Selena” be added to the registry. Last week, it followed up with a list of 25 other films (that’s the number of movies added each year by the board) it believes “reflect the diversity of Latino identities, histories, geographies, and political perspectives.” You can see the full list here.

“Hollywood is the main image-defining and narrative-producing industry in the United States,” the caucus said in a letter to the board.

“As you know, Latinos remain dramatically underrepresented in this influential industry, contributing to the misperceptions and stereotypes about Latinos in our society. In effect, when we cannot tell our stories, others will tell stories about us.”

Does the caucus have a point? Absolutely!


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