Part Two: Europe, Asia, Australia, Mexico, and Central and South America
This is the second installment of our curated collection of media programs from many different world regions, in honor of International Literacy Day.
Mexico, Central America, South America
Amores Perros (Mexico)
Seemingly inconsequential events line up until a tragic car accident brings three different narratives together to create this movie. This emotional film centered on loss and regret is considered one of the best by Alejandro González Iñárritu.1
The Sacred Science (Peru)
This documentary from Peru explores the healing powers of indigenous plants as well as the spiritual practices of Amazon medicine men. Eight people travel to the Amazon in hope of finding a cure for their illness based on traditional medicine.2
The Color of Passion (Mexico)
This Mexican telenovela Rebecca who holds a grudge against her sister Arianna for obtaining everything Rebecca has ever wanted in live, including the man she loves.3
The Garifuna Journey (Belize)
Working closely with Garifuna tradition bearers, this “outsider and insider” collaboration is the first of its kind, one that captures the triumph of spirit of the Garifuna people. With vivid and engaging footage shot entirely in Belize, the documentary celebrates the continuity of Garifuna culture in the face of overwhelming odds.4
Hinterland/Y Gwyll (Wales)
In a remote corner of Wales DCI Tom Mathais solves crime sin a town full of dark secrets. This four-part drama series from the BBC is set in Aberystwyth, Wales and contained English and Welsh dialogue.
Portrait of a Lady on Fire (France)
This film by director Céline Sciamma follows Marianne, a woman hired to paint the wedding portrait of Héloïse, a young woman who just left the convent. Héloïse is a reluctant bride and in order to paint her portrait Marianne must work secretly and poses as a companion for Héloïse. As the two women grow closer, the intimacy between them grows until the portrait becomes a collaborative act and expression of their love.6
The Peasant and the Priest (Italy)
This documentary by Polish artist Esther Podemski tells the story of two elderly Italian men and how their way of life reflects that of medieval Italy in many ways. Sergio is a sharecropper utilizing ancient farming methods, and Father Oreste serves in a religious capacity working toward making the world a better place as he fights against the forced prostitution of African women in Italy.7
Empress Ki/기황후/ 奇皇后 (Korea)
This historical romance follows Empress Ki, a famous Korean-born woman from Goryeo. This drama follows Empress Ki as she ascends to power despite class restrictions weighting against her to become the favored wife of the Mongol emperor Togon-temür.
吸血鬼ハンターD ブラッドラスト Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust (Japan)
Based off the famous Japanese lite novel series Vampire Hunter D by Hideyuki Kikuchi this anime follows the famous character D as he sets out to save a kidnapped woman and destroy the vampire that abducted her.9
舌尖上的中国 A Bite of China (China)
This CCTV documentary explores the diverse food culture found throughout China. This documentary is a view into famous, and less known foods of China through the lens of famous chefs, regional cuisine, as well as the traditional food of ethnic minorities.10
The Wedge is an Australian comedy sketch show that takes place in the same fictional town over the course of two seasons. Each episode makes a nod to previous episodes and ties all of them together in a comedic sequence. 11
This Australian psychological horror follows a single mother plagued by the sudden death of her husband as she struggles to cope and care for her young son. After finding an eery children’s book titled “Mister Babadook” strange things begin to happen in her home.12
The Australian Dream
This documentary follows retired AFL star Adam Goodes who left the sport to take up advocacy after experiencing racial abuse during a match. Goodes, an activist for Indigenous causes in Australia, came face to face with the all too common fact that Australia as a whole is often unwilling to confront its problematic past and present relations with aboriginal communities throughout the continent.
Student blogger Kathryn Vandrey is a graduate student and Media Services desk staff member. Kathryn studies Chinese language and history.