HOUSTON (KIAH) The Museum of Fine Arts presents the 15th edition of the Latin Wave Film Festival here in Houston Thursday, April 21st through Sunday, April 24th. Houstonians will have the opportunity to see new films from Latin America, and to meet internationally acclaimed filmmakers at the event.
The nature of the festival allows audience members to interact with the filmmakers in Q&A sessions and informal conversations. The robust line-up includes 11 acclaimed releases from Latin America, including Alberto Arvelo’s Free Color, Ana Katz’s The Dog Who Wouldn’t Be Quiet, and Gian Cassini’s Comala.
The full schedule and list of anticipated guest appearances for Latin Wave 15 can also be found at https://www.mfah.org/calendar/series/latin-wave/.
*Introduced by Mari Carmen Ramírez
(Directed by Alberto Arvelo, USA/France/Venezuela, 2020, 70 minutes, Spanish, English, and French with
Thursday, April 21, at 5 p.m.; Sunday, April 24, at 3:15 p.m. in the Lynn Wyatt Theater
Franco-Venezuelan artist Carlos Cruz-Diez (1923–2019) is one of the 20th century’s seminal thinkers in the
field of color. The insightful new documentary Free Color traces his vision and artistic evolution through
archival footage. Also featured are interviews with the artist, family members, collaborators, and scholars,
including MFAH curator Mari Carmen Ramírez. The artist’s Chromosaturation MFAH (1965/2017, installed
2020) is in the Cherie and Jim Flores Tunnel in the Nancy and Rich Kinder Building.
The Dog Who Wouldn’t Be Quiet
*Introduced by Ana Katz with Q&A
(Directed by Ana Katz, Argentina, 2021, 73 minutes, Spanish with English subtitles)
Thursday, April 21, at 7:30 p.m. in the Brown Auditorium Theater
The sixth film by acclaimed writer-director Ana Katz follows Sebastián, an ordinary man in his thirties
devoted to his loyal dog and working on numerous temporary jobs. As he moves fitfully through adulthood,
he navigates love, loss, and fatherhood—until the world is rocked by a sudden catastrophe, upending his
already turbulent life. Photographed in stark black-and-white, Katz captures Sebastián’s midlife coming of
age in slices of life both specific and universal as he struggles to adjust to a world that is perpetually
changing—and might be nearing its end.
*Introduced by Juan Pablo González with Q&A
(Directed by Juan Pablo González, Mexico, 2022, 97 minutes, Spanish with English subtitles)
Friday, April 22 at 7 p.m. in the Brown Auditorium Theater
Director Juan Pablo González offers a welcome twist to the traditional films set in the idyllic haciendas of
yesteryear’s Mexican cinema to tell the story of María García, an iron-willed businesswoman who fights the
impending collapse of her tequila factory in an increasingly globalized industry. Set in the Jalisco highlands
and anchored by a brilliant performance by Teresa Sánchez—winner of a Special Jury Prize for Acting at
Sundance—Dos Estaciones is a love letter to the director’s homeland, as well as a potent tale of resilience.
Bob Spit: We Do Not Like People
(Directed by Cesar Cabral, Brazil, 2021, 90 minutes, Portuguese with English subtitles)
Friday, April 22, at 9:30 p.m. in the Lynn Wyatt Theater
Winner of a Best Feature Award at the Annecy Film Festival, this zany and irreverent indie stop-motion
animated feature is inspired by the life and work of one of the most celebrated Brazilian cartoonists of all
times, Angeli, and his popular creation, the punk character Bob Spit. In his wild debut feature, director
Cesar Cabral ingeniously mixes documentary, comedy, and road movie to create an offbeat animated
experience unlike you’ve ever seen, including tiny, bloodthirsty clones of Elton John.
The City of Wild Beasts
(Directed by Henry Rincon, Colombia, 2021, 95 minutes, Spanish with English subtitles)
Saturday, April 23, at 12 p.m. in the Lynn Wyatt Theater
After an altercation with gang members, Tato, a newly orphaned teenager who is an avid rapper, must flee
his neighborhood. His only option is to leave Medellín, and live in the countryside with his estranged
grandfather. Two generations, two ways of life, and a continuous feeling of loss, death, and loneliness reign
over Tato’s life in his struggle to survive and find his own identity. Winner of the Best Ibero-American Film
Prize at the Miami Film Festival, the impressive second feature by Henry Rincón is a vigorous and
engrossing tale of endurance.
(Directed by Maximiliano Schonfeld, France/Argentina, 2021, 86 minutes, Spanish with English subtitles)
Saturday, April 23, at 3 p.m. in the Lynn Wyatt Theater
Jesús López is a young and promising racing driver whose death in a motorcycle accident leaves his small
town deeply shaken. His teenaged cousin Abel is gradually tempted to take his place with his family and
friends, until he lets himself be possessed by his cousin’s spirit. Winner of the Best Latin American Film
Award at the Mar del Plata Film Festival, the fourth feature film by Maximiliano Schonfeld is a captivating
and elegantly directed mystical tale about community grief and emancipation.
*Introduced by Gian Cassini with Q&A
(Directed by Gian Cassini, Mexico, 2021, 98 minutes, Spanish with English subtitles)
Saturday, April 23, at 5 p.m. in the Brown Auditorium Theater
In his acclaimed debut feature, named after the town where Juan Rulfo’s landmark 1955 novel Pedro
Páramo takes place, director Gian Cassini sets out to uncover the truths of his own broken family, while
picking up the pieces of his absent father’s story as a failed hitman murdered in a Mexican border town. As
he traverses the country in search of clues, the filmmaker uncovers a network of men stuck within deeply
rooted patterns of machismo and offers unprecedented access into the personal ramifications of Mexico’s
war on drugs.
(Directed by Aly Muritiba, Brazil, 2021, 125 minutes, Portuguese with English subtitles)
Saturday, April 23, at 7:45 p.m. in the Lynn Wyatt Theater
Daniel is a 40-year-old man who has been suspended from active police work and is under internal
investigation. When Sara, his internet love affair, goes missing, he drives to search for her in the northeast
of the country. Thousands of miles from home, Daniel meets a man who can put the two in touch again,
though under very specific conditions. The most recent film by Aly Muritiba is a gripping tale of an
impossible love set under adverse conditions, and an engrossing inquiry into masculinity in contemporary
Memories of My Father
(Directed by Fernando Trueba, Colombia, 2020, 136 minutes, Spanish, English and Italian with English
Sunday, April 24, at 12 p.m. in the Lynn Wyatt Theater
Based on the eponymous novel, Memories of My Father tells the real-life story of Héctor Abad Gómez, a
renowned doctor and human-rights activist in Medellín during the violent 1970s. Driven by sadness and
rage after cancer takes the life of one of his daughters, he devotes himself to social and political causes
without regard to his personal safety. Directed by Academy Award–winning director Fernando Trueba, this
intimate story is told by the doctor’s only son, Héctor Abad Faciolince, one of the most outstanding writers
in contemporary Colombia.
The Best Families
*Introduced by Javier Fuentes-León with Q&A
(Directed by Javier Fuentes-León, Peru/Colombia, 2020, 99 minutes, Spanish with English subtitles)
Sunday, April 24 at 5:30 p.m. in the Brown Auditorium Theater
The most recent film by acclaimed director Javier Fuentes-León (Undertow) is a satirical, over- the-top
comedy that follows Luzmila and Peta, two sisters working as housemaids for different aristocratic ladies
of Peru. They are almost considered a part of each family, or at least that’s how it seems. One day, as the
city is taken over by violent protests, the members of both families gather for a birthday celebration. A
long-held secret involving both households—upstairs and downstairs—is suddenly revealed, blowing up
the bubble of their perfect aristocratic world forever.
(Directed by Nathalie Álvarez Mesén, Sweden/Costa Rica/Belgium/Germany/France, 2021, 106 minutes,
Spanish with English subtitles)
Sunday, April 24, at 8 p.m. in the Lynn Wyatt Theater
A favorite at Cannes Directors’ Fortnight, the acclaimed debut feature by Nathalie Álvarez Mesén is set in a
remote Costa Rican village and follows 40-year-old Clara, who endures a repressively religious and
withdrawn life under the command of her mother. Clara’s uncanny affinity for creatures large and small
allows her to find solace in the natural world. Tension builds within the family as her younger niece
approaches her quinceañera, igniting a sexual and mystical awakening in Clara, and a journey to free
herself from the conventions that have dominated her life.
Anticipated Special Guests:
Carlos A. Gutiérrez
Co-founder/Executive Director, Cinema Tropical
Based in New York City, Carlos A. Gutiérrez is the cofounder of Cinema Tropical, the leading presenter of
Latin American cinema in the United States. He earned a graduate degree from New York University and
graduated from Mexico City’s Universidad Iberoamericana. He sits on the board of directors of Film Forum
and has served on juries for numerous film festivals. Gutiérrez has been a nominator and panelist for the
Rockefeller Fellowship Program for Mexican Film & Media Arts and the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts
Initiative, as well as a screening panelist for the Oscars’ Academy Awards for film students.
Mari Carmen Ramírez
Wortham Curator of Latin America Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
A globally renowned authority on modern and contemporary Latin American art, Mari Carmen Ramírez has
published extensively and curated numerous award-winning exhibitions, including Inverted Utopias: Avant-
Garde Art in Latin America (with Héctor Olea, 2004) and Beatriz González: A Retrospective (with Tobias
Ostrander, 2019). She has also conceptualized and implemented the ICAA Documents of 20th-Century Latin
American and Latino Art Project, a major digital archive and book series focused on primary sources.
Ramírez received the 2005 Award for Curatorial Excellence from the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard
College, and was named by Time magazine as one of “the 25 Most Influential Hispanics in America.”
Director, “The Dog Who Wouldn’t Be Quiet”
Buenos Aires born Ana Katz is a filmmaker, screenwriter, producer, and actress. She was educated at
Universidad del Cine, and after making a few short films, made her award-winning feature debut in 2002
with Musical Chairs. Her second feature, A Stray Girlfriend (2007), was presented in the Un Certain Regard
section at Cannes. Katz often makes dark, tragic comedies filled with awkward humor.
Juan Pablo González
Director, “Dos Estaciones”
Named one of Filmmaker Magazine’s “25 New Faces of Independent Film” in 2015, Juan Pablo González is a
Mexican filmmaker whose work has screened at Cannes, Rotterdam, the Lincoln Center of New York,
among others. He currently teaches in the film directing program at the California Institute of the Arts. Juan
Pablo’s practice spans between fiction and nonfiction cinema. He is concerned with representations of rural
life, drug violence, immigration, and the intersection between urban and country life in different
communities around the Jalisco Highlands.
Gian Cassini is a documentary filmmaker based in Monterrey, Mexico. He is a writer, editor,
producer, and director of features, short films, and television series. He has participated in
different filmmaking programs including the IDFAcademy, DocMontevideo, Impulso Morelia,
and the Logan Nonfiction Program. Comala marks his debut feature.
Director, “The Best Families”
After becoming a medical doctor in Peru, Javier Fuentes-León studied film at the California Institute of the
Arts (CalArts) in Los Angeles. His film Rooms (1997) won the Peruvian National Award for Short Films. His
first feature, Contracorriente (Undertow) premiered at the San Sebastian Film Festival in 2009 and won
over 50 international awards, including the Audience Award at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival. It was
Peru’s submission to the 2011 Academy Awards. Fuentes-León is a cowriter and the lead director of the
first season of Netflix’s original series Distrito Salvaje (Wild District), shot entirely in Colombia in 2018.
The event is organized by the MFAH in association with the creative partner Fundación PROA, Buenos Aires and sponsored by Tenaris.