Movies for your Spanish class

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Mexican singer Natalia Lafourcade at the Oscar Awards ceremony

Movies are a great way to teach culture.

They can also be helpful when we take a day off, and we want our sub to have an easy day.

Or you may want to use them as a reward to celebrate your students' achievements.

Whatever the reason, here's a list with of our 10 favorite movies for your Spanish classes.

Enjoy it!

Please vote on the poll to let us know which movie(s) you prefer.

If you have any more suggestions, write them in the comments below this post so we can add more titles to this entry and the poll.

Movie poster from the Pixar movie Coco

2017 · PG · 1h 45m

IMDb RATING: 8.4/10

PLATFORM: Disney +

PERFECT FOR: Mexican culture (Day of the Dead)

PLOT: Miguel is a young Mexican boy who loves music. However, his family has banned music and he's not allowed to sing or play his guitar. While trying to secretely enter a music contest, he ends up in the Land of the Dead, where he seeks his great-great-grandfather, a legendary singer.

IN BABLINGUA: Take a look at our resources about El Día de Muertos and easily connect them to the movie.

Movie poster of In the Heights
In the Heights

2021 · PG-13 · 2h 23m

IMDb RATING: 7.3/10

PLATFORM: Max & Amazon

PERFECT FOR: Immigration, identity and Latin neighborhoods in the U.S.

PLOT: based on Lin-Manuel Miranda's successful musical, it tells the stories of several members of the Latin community of the Washington Heights neighborhood (Upper Manhattan, NY). We get to know their dreams and struggles, and what life in a Hispanic neighborhood is like.

IN BABLINGUA: Find out Quiara Alegría-Hudes' contributions to both the musical and the movie on chapter 11 of our Spanish reader 15 sueños: Quiara Alegría-Hudes sueña en su barrio.

The movie poster of A Million Miles Away
A Million Miles Away
2023 · PG · 2h 1m

IMDb RATING: 7.3/10


PERFECT FOR: Immigration and the power of persistence

PLOT: the amazing -and true- story of José Hernández. José was a farm worker with his immigrant family in California. He managed to beat the odds and become an engineer and an astronaut.

IN BABLINGUA: The last chapter of our Spanish reader 15 sueños -José Hernández tuitea desde el espacio- tells the story of José Hernández. He reached his dream, and sent the first tweet in Spanish from outer space to summarize his achievements.

Movie poster from Encanto

2021 · PG · 1h 42m

IMDb RATING: 7.2/10

PLATFORM: Disney +

PERFECT FOR: Family and life in rural Colombia

PLOT: Maribel is a teenage girl who lives with her family in the Colombian coffee region. She thinks she's the only member of her family without magical powers, but she may be wrong.

IN BABLINGUA: Check out our Maribel's family lesson and the one about the Colombian coffee region, which includes a visit to Casita.

The movie poster of Book of Life
The Book of Life

2014 · PG · 1h 35m

IMDb RATING: 7.2/10

PLATFORM: Disney +

PERFECT FOR: Mexican culture (Day of the Dead)

PLOT: A great alternative to Coco to talk about Día de Muertos. It also offers a connection with bullfighting. The movie tells the story of Manolo, a young man who is torn between fulfilling the expectations of his family and following his heart

IN BABLINGUA: We have great lessons for all levels to explore the Day of the Dead.

Movie poster of Pachamama

2018· PG · 1h 12m

IMDb RATING: 6.8/10


PERFECT FOR: The Inca Empire and Peru

PLOT: A short movie about Tepulpai, a young 10-year-old boy,  who lives in a remote village in the Andes Mountains and dreams of becoming shaman.

IN BABLINGUA: Explore the Inca Empire and Peru with our Rumbo a Machu Picchu series and the Los pájaros lesson. 

Movie poster of Selena

1997· PG · 2h 7m

IMDb RATING: 6.8/10

PLATFORM: Amazon & Apple TV

PERFECT FOR: Latin music and the story of Selena Quintanilla

PLOT: Jennifer Lopez brings to life the story of the Mexican "Tejano" style singer Selena Quintanilla-Perez and her amazing career.

IN BABLINGUA: Continue talking about Latin music with Mucho más que música and ¿Quién es tu cantante favorito? 

Movie poster from Dora and the Lost City of Gold
Dora and the Lost City of Gold

2019 · PG · 1h 42m

IMDb RATING: 6.1/10


PERFECT FOR: The Inca Empire and some Spanish words taught by Dora

PLOT: Who doesn't know Dora? On this movie she leads her friends on an adventure to save her parents and solve the mystery behind a lost Inca city of gold.

IN BABLINGUA: Talk about the Inca Empire and Peru with our Rumbo a Machu Picchu series.

Father There Is Only One
2019 · Not rated in the U.S. (12 in the U.K.) · 1h 38m


PLATFORM: Amazon & Apple TV

PERFECT FOR: Showing students what Spanish family movies are like

PLOT: This movie has not been rated in the U.S. yet, so please do the proper research before playing it in class. It's a very successful Spanish comedy that tells the story of a workaholic father who needs to look after his five children by himself.

IN BABLINGUA: See our La familia lesson for more resources to talk about families in your novice level classes.

Movie poster of Frida
2002 · R · 2h 3m

IMDb RATING: 7.3/10

PLATFORM: Amazon & Apple TV

PERFECT FOR: The life and achievements of Frida Kahlo (and Diego Rivera) 

PLOT: A biography of artist Frida Kahlo could only end up on a rated movie, not suitable for the classroom. Yet you may be able to show some appropriate scenes from this great movie. Please watch it carefully before using it in class.

IN BABLINGUA: The activities and video of El diseño de La Catrina are about Frida and Diego Rivera.

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