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Hispanics in Hollywood Paperback – October 1, 2000

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

This large-format one-volume encyclopedia covers popular Hollywood films (chiefly those of the sound era) and television programs featuring Hispanic actors or addressing Hispanic themes. The work is divided into two main sections, plot summaries and biographies, with a good index that leads to information on people and films not listed separately in the main sections. Though covering much of the material included in George Hadley-Garcia's Hispanic Hollywood (Carol Pub. Group, 1990), this new work is much better suited for reference use. Many handsome black-and-white stills from film publicist Reyes's personal collection will provide hours of entertaining browsing. A drawback is the lack of attention to correctly written Spanish; for names of actors known primarily for Spanish-language films and particularly in citing titles of Spanish-language films, accents marks are generally left out (e.g., Luis Bunuel instead of Luis Bun~uel). At least the authors are consistent in ignoring correct usage. Recommended for larger film collections and for libraries with a need for popular material on Hispanic films.
James E. Ross, Seattle P.L.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

Although Hispanic Americans have been involved in many aspects of the American film industry, there has been little note taken of this fact in standard film-reference works. In addition to the biographical sketches and descriptions of films and television programs that make up the bulk of this work, there are also essays on the role of the Hispanic American in American film and television. The book begins with an essay on movies, followed by alphabeticallly arranged entries on films that had a Hispanic character, setting, or subject or in which a Hispanic actor starred. Each entry includes producer, director, writer, cast, and a brief summary of the plot. Individuals whose names appear in boldface type are the subject of biographical sketches later in the book. The next section begins with an essay on television followed by entries on individual programs, which include network, cast, and a brief plot summary. Again, boldface type is used to indicate persons who are the subject of biographies. This section is followed by brief essays on Zorro and the Cisco Kid, with complete chronologies of their movie and television incarnations. Finally, there is the biographical section, which lists Hispanic American performers and behind-the-scenes personnel. The authors indicate that they have "also included . . . a number of non-Hispanic individuals who are nevertheless identified in the public mind as Hispanic, on the basis of the roles they played or their Hispanic-sounding names." There is a separate section of "profiles of selected non-Hispanic filmmakers who have contributed substantially to shaping the cinematic image of Hispanic Americans through classic films they made." These include such directors as John Ford and John Huston. An index completes the work; a selected bibliography precedes the front matter.

There are throughout the book black-and-white photographs of very good quality. Studio portraits, movie posters, and stills of many familiar (and some unfamiliar) faces and scenes complement the text. Since there is currently little on this increasingly popular subject, it is recommended for film and Hispanic-culture collections alike. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 550 pages
  • Publisher: Lone Eagle; 1St Edition edition (October 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580650252
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580650250
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 1.3 x 10.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,249,636 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Book Reviewer on October 4, 2000
Format: Paperback
By JONATHAN KIRSCH, Special to The LA Times "...An illuminating and entertaining survey of films and television programs in which Latino actors, settings or themes figure prominently, "Hispanics in Hollywood" is full of such surprises. Anthony Quinn, perhaps best known as Zorba the Greek, is only one of many actors whose Mexican origins were once concealed, and there are many others whose Latino roots have only recently come to public attention, ranging from Rita Hayworth (born Margarita Cansino) to John Gavin (born John Anthony Golenar) to Raquel Welch (born Raquel Tejada). And it was a young Emilio Estevez who boldly reclaimed his own Latino family history and thus revealed to the world that the real name of his father, Charlie Sheen, is Ramon More often Latino actors found themselves in an awkward dilemma in Hollywood, as the authors of "Hispanics in Hollywood" point out--if their Latino identities were not concealed, they were put to use in depicting stereotyped Latino characters: "maids, slum dwellers, drug addicts and gang members," co-author Luis Reyes reminds us, or "cruel dictators, mustachioed bandits and beautiful señoritas." Only in the last couple of decades have Latino actors and directors enjoyed the opportunity to tell stories about their own heritage in a more open, honest and affirming voice in movies such as "Zoot Suit," "La Bamba," "Stand and Deliver," "Selena" and "A Walk in the Clouds.Read more ›
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Rochmanna Miller on February 22, 2009
Format: Paperback
Bravo Mr. Reyes for such a deeply researched, sensitively written, book blooming with photographs of Hispanics in Hollywood celebrated over 100 years. Indeed, this was needed many years ago, especially in my start as a high school teacher in a predominantly Latino/Latina high school for 28 years. Zoot Suit was culturally affirming for East Los Angeles. The unique style and political statements opened up new worlds of research re Latino/a film. And look at the power of Teatro Campesino, and its earlier form in La Carpa, in making political statements regarding exploitation of the Mexican worker. And now, in your book, we get to look back at the contributions made in earlier times we did not know of, and contemporary times.

The world of prejudice and stereotyping is So complex and being examined now in organizations such as Facing History and Ourselves,and college texts that reveal an array of a variety of cultures in America, especially of the tension between adapting and keeping two cultural worlds within and without.
Alas, there are intracultural prejudices too. Sometimes more established Latinos/as make fun of the recently arrived as wetbacks. In Jewish society, those who were in the US longer than the recently arrived Jews--called them "greenhorns".

I loved so much of this book and have given it five stars. I also liked the preface tremendously. I too had the experience of watching films for content and style, and pausing for the film to permeate me as long as it could. At that time, I was particularly interested in the psychological depth, and the unique style of filming of the unconscious as well as the conscious world in Fellini, Truffaut, Bergman, and many others perhaps forgotten now, and of course Bunuel. I was lucky to see and read "The Boom".
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Anibal O. Lleras on February 22, 2009
Format: Paperback
Is a great book...it tells you mostly all about the hispanic efforts throughout the year and it give you plenty of history.

Anibal O. Lleras
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My copy of this invaluable book is dog-eared and so covered in sticky-notes it looks like it has feathers. Anyone interested in the history of Latinos in Hollywood should own this book. It is thoroughly researched and packed with little known facts, wonderful information and photos. Sadly, it is out of print. "Hispanics in Hollywood" should be reprinted and revised to include the approximately twenty years of notable Hispanics who have impacted the entertainment industry since its publication.
Jan Pippins,author
"Henry Darrow:Lightning in the Bottle"
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This is a must-read for students of and experts in Spanish and Latin American Studies. I used it as a primary source in my doctoral dissertation in the field.
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