Poor Mexican Cinema, So Far From "Cahiers du Cinéma" and So Close to Latino U.S.A.: a Cantankerous Essay

Carl J. Mora


The title of this essay is inspired by a remark attributed to Porfirio Díaz, dictatorial president of Mexico from 1876 to 1910. The actual quote is ""Poor Mexico, so far from God and so close to the United States"-a reflection on the always problematic relationship between the two neighboring countries. Of course, I am not implying that Cahiers du Cinémaenjoys any kind of divine status. I simply use it as a symbol of serious international cinema, where films are appreciated for their individuality and artistry. The title should also broadcast that this is an opinion piece (well, an unabashed rant, really-especially in the reference notes) against certain broad-based cultural perceptions in the United States and how they may affect the distribution of foreign and domestic movies.

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