Cultural Movies

As a Latin Organization we take great pride in not only understanding our past and culture, but educating ourselves on many Cultures. There is such diversity in the Latin Culture alone. Monica Guerrero (AZ/Gamma) is fan of the Vistas Film Festival held each year at the Angelika movie theater in Dallas. This year we like to help spread the word! While CUS is not associated with this organization, it is our goal to promote the educational of not only ourselves but our community.

Vistas Film Festival Postcard

The Vistas Film Festival shows great Latino films year-round. Each fall, Vistas hosts a four-day festival at the Angelika Film Center at Mockingbird Station in Dallas, attracting directors, producers and stars from around the globe. Thousands of film lovers from across North Texas attend the festival to watch movies, have coffee with the filmmakers and to mingle at the after-parties. We invite you to attend the 10th Annual Vistas Film Festival from September 17-20, 2009 at the Angelika Film Center.

The Vistas Film Festival brings great cinematic works by or about Latinos to North Texas. Since 1999, Vistas has given movie-lovers a rare, yet wonderful, opportunity to see exceptional motion pictures from places as remote as the Andes Mountains or as familiar as the streets of San Antonio. Sadly, most of the 300-plus films that Vistas has shown have never returned to Dallas/Fort Worth or other theaters in the United States.

The films shown at Vistas reflect the rich diversity of Latino cultures. We seek to include all genres from every country in Latin America, the Caribbean and Spain. Filmmakers of all cultural backgrounds pleasantly surprise us with films that transcend geographic and cultural boundaries. The wide-ranging topics addressed in the films—whether they are humorous or heavy—reflect the boundless creativity of both emerging and experienced filmmakers. Collectively, they capture the spirit of the 2009 Vistas Film Festival: Old Traditions. New Stories.

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History of the Film Festival

The Herculano & Elida Hernandez Foundation was created in 1996 to promote Latino culture through arts and education. InElidaHerculano creating the foundation, Frank P. Hernandez sought to honor the memory of his parents and their lifelong commitment to the Latino community.

Hernandez, a civil rights attorney in Dallas for more than 45 years, was the first Mexican-American graduate from the “day program” at Southern Methodist University’s Law School. He went on to become the first Hispanic judge in the history of Dallas County. In 1971, he founded the Greater Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, which merged with the now-defunct Mexican Chamber of Commerce. He also was a founder of the Mexican-American Bar Association, which later became the Dallas Hispanic Bar Association.

Hernandez’s lifelong passion for film compelled him to enroll in the film school at New York University in the summer of 1990. It also prompted former Dallas Mayor Steve Bartlett to bestow upon Hernandez the title of first Film Commissioner for the City of Dallas in 1992. Through the foundation, Hernandez first focused on small community events expose audiences to emerging artists.

In 1999, the effort blossomed into the four-day international Vistas Film Festival as well as a year-round film series. Each year the festival welcomes several filmmakers from across the country and hosts receptions and workshops that allow the audience to interact with the filmmakers.


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