N A V I
G A T E

Home
A Brief Introduction
Years in Review
Films Ranked: 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005
Current Criticism
Search Criticism
Past Criticism
Top 10 Lists
Notable Short Films
Links
Contact Me

Canoa: A Shameful Memory

Director:  Felipe Cazals
Year Released:  1976
Rating:  1.5

Bubbly college students (actually: sacrificial sheep) go to the town of San Miguel Canoa to climb La Malinche, but are brutally beaten by the (mostly) illiterate town people, who are convinced by a corrupt priest that these visitors are actually Communists. The combination of fictional filmmaking and 'documentary' gives it an unnatural, sometimes amateurish feel - it reminds me more of Gualtiero Jacopetti's silly Mondo Cane pictures than, say, the best political movies by Costa-Gavras - and the fact that the Mexican government helped fund it (the Army turns out to be the heroes) goes against its "revolutionary" reputation. According to their commentary on the Criterion release, both Alfonso CuarĂ³n and Guillermo del Toro hold it in high regard, so it could be the case of a film being more valued for its importance to Mexican cinema culture and less for its aesthetics/storytelling.

Return to the Previous Page

© Copyright 2017 Matthew Lotti.