In case you don't read Entertainment Weekly and didn't see this week's double issue on "The New Classics," or you didn't see my post last week about their list of the best movies from the last 25 years, here's a sad fact: only six foreign-language films made the list. They are: Wings of Desire (#28); Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (#49); The Lives of Others (#56); All About My Mother (#69); Y Tu Mamá También (#86); and In the Mood for Love (#95). OK, so 6% is not terrible for a mainstream entertainment magazine, but EW had to add insult to injury with an accompanying map labeled "Movies: Breaking Down the List," which points to a number of locations around the globe in which some of these new classics are set. The only continent on the map without any love is South America (Antarctica was not included in the visual aid).
Now, before I get into my love letter to new Latin American cinema, I have to note that no film produced in Africa made the list either. However, on the map the continent was at least given some minuscule bit of love via the filming locations for Casino Royale and Gladiator. Yet despite the fact that South America was definitely used as a location in a few of the 100 films, it's shown no respect. And on top of that, Central America isn't even included on the map. For some strange reason there's just a gap between Mexico and South America. Meanwhile, Latin America's sole representative on EW's list, Mexico's Y Tu Mamá También, is left off the map so that no location from this area of the world, from the Mexican-U.S. border to Cape Horn, receives any recognition.