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Los Olvidados (The Young and the Damned) (1950)
Surrealist Luis Buñuel, famed for controversial classics like Belle du jour and Viridiana, was born in Spain but became a naturalized Mexican citizen. Among the films he made in his adopted country is this bleak portrayal of street children in Mexico City.
Como agua para chocolate (Like Water for Chocolate) (1992)
Alfonso Arau directed this cinematic adaptation of Laura Esquivel's popular 1989 novel. The story incorporates magical realism as it follows a young woman who must sacrifice true love for the sake of her family, but uses her cooking to convey her true feelings.
Sexo, pudor y lágrimas (Sex, Shame & Tears) (1999)
This film was box-office hit in Mexico. From director Antonio Serrano, it stars Oscar nominee Demián Bichir as a blond lothario caught up in his friends' rocky relationship.
Amores Perros (2000)
You may have seen 21 Grams and Babel, but the first film in Alejandro González Iñárritu's so-called Trilogy of Death is the best, no matter how overlooked it is. Like the other two films, Amores Perros tells the story of a group of characters bound only by a random occurrence.
Y Tu Mamá También (2001)
Alfonso Cuarón's dramedy about two friends besotted with the same woman grossed $13 million in the U.S. — a significant sum for a foreign-language film. You might remember it for its steamy threesome scene, and yes, it's also responsible for your lingering crushes on Diego Luna and Gael García Bernal.