Chulas Fronteras (Beautiful Borders)

(USA/1976—directed by Les Blank and Chris Strachwitz) 

Selected by the Library of Congress as a national treasure, Chulas Fronteras is a zesty introduction to musica Norteña (Tejano/Conjunto) and the culture of the Texas-Mexico border. A fusion of traditional Mexican harmonies, dancehall rhythms and a little something extra, música Norteña has evolved since the early 20th century into a unique Mexican-American hybrid, and this classic documentary links the music’s spirit and vitality to the strong family bonds of Tejanos.

Also showing is the 1979 Del Mero Corazón (Straight From the Heart), a lyrical, 28-minute musical journey through the heart of Chicano culture, using additional footage and outtakes from Chulas Fronteras, assembled by Les Blank collaborator Maureen Gosling. (86 min. total) 

“The best visual record of Tex-Mex & Norteño music.” -Ry Cooder 



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