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Spanish Department at Western to host month-long film series beginning Wednesday, Feb. 3

January 29, 2016

Penelope Cruz stars
Penelope Cruz stars in "Volver," one of four films featured in the Spanish Department Film Series at WWCC.

The Spanish Department at Western Wyoming Community College will host a month-long Spanish-language film series featuring screenings of several acclaimed motion pictures, including “Amores Perros,” the debut feature from ‘The Revenant’ director Alejandro González Iñárritu. All films will be screened at 7 p.m. in Room 1302 at the Rock Springs campus.

The Spanish Department Film Series is free and open to the public. All films except for the Feb. 3 title, “Underwater Dreams,” are rated R, so parental discretion is strongly advised for children under 17.  

Also, except for “Underwater Dreams,” which is an English-language documentary, all movies will be screened in Spanish with English subtitles.  

“Amores Perros” will close out the series on Wednesday, Feb. 24, at 7 p.m. The film, produced in 2000, was the feature-length debut of Oscar-winning director Iñárritu, who would go on to make such respected dramas as “21 Grams,” “Babel” and “Biutiful” before winning last year’s Academy Award for Best Director for “Birdman (or The Unexpected Virtues of Ignorance),” starring Michael Keaton, which also won Best Picture. Iñárritu has been nominated for Best Director again this year for “The Revenant,” which is also nominated for Best Picture.      

“Amores Perros” follows the lives and fates of several people whose troubled personal stories become intertwined as the result of a terrible automobile accident. Often compared in structure and tone to Quentin Tarantino’s “Pulp Fiction,” “Amores Perros” features an edgy mix of crime, violence, humor, and terrific acting performances from an excellent cast. The film was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 2001. (Rated R for violence/gore, language, and sexuality)      

The Spanish Department Film Festival lineup also includes:

On Wednesday, Feb. 3, “Underwater Dreams” (2014), a documentary directed by Mary Mazzio and narrated by Michael Peña that chronicles the story of how the sons of undocumented immigrants from Mexico learned how to build underwater robots from cheap PVC parts and put themselves in competition with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the process. (Not Rated – appropriate for general audiences)

On Wednesday, Feb. 10, “The Motorcycle Diaries” (2004), director Walter Salles’s dramatization of Argentine revolutionary Ernesto “Che” Guevara’s memoir about his transformational motorcycle trip through South America as a young medical student. There, he witnessed much poverty, hunger and disease, which helped to inspire his later revolutionary activities in Cuba and beyond. (Rated R for language)   

On Wednesday, Feb. 17, “Volver” ("Return") (2006), acclaimed writer-director Pedro Almodóvar’s imaginative comedy-drama starring Penelope Cruz as a mother who returns to her hometown following her own death in an attempt to rectify those situations she was unable to resolve during her life. (Rated R for some sexual content and language)    

Western is pleased to welcome students and community members to what the Spanish Department hopes will become an annual or semi-annual campus event. For more information, email Associate Professor of Spanish Jim Gustafson, Ph.D., at or Assistant Professor of Spanish Nish Goicolea at    


For more information, contact Audrey Harton at (307) 382-1661 or
(307) 382-1600 or toll free (800) 226-1181