Hispanic Culture in Like Water for Chocolate Essay

1777 Words 8 Pages
As the first major U.S. success for a Spanish language film, Como Agua Para Chocolate (Alfonso Arau, 1992) has had a major impact on Hispanic culture and the future of Hispanic cinema. This film has many implicit and explicit layers that challenge typical cultural ideals, not only in Hispanic culture, but in various cultures across the world. Based on his wife, Laura Esquivel’s novel, Arau used this film, known commonly as Like Water for Chocolate, to bring to the surface the liberation of females through the empowerment of food. Although food and cooking are often associated with the oppression and generalization of Hispanic women, Like Water for Chocolate captivates an empowering view of women using intimate and heightened cinematography …show more content…
The only notable male character is Pedro, Tita’s true love and her brother-in-law. However, he is influenced completely by Tita and has no bearing on the film other than that which she gives him through the power of her love and her food. The major women of the film are all from the same family. Mama Elana, Tita, Rosaura, and Gertrudis all play important roles in the film and affect the food aspect. Tita, as the protagonist, is the most important character and chef. As stated in the synopses, Tita can influence the other characters with her cooking, through her emotions and the ingredients. Tita suffers from much heartbreak throughout the film, and as a result, creates bitter and sensual food. Other than the wedding cake, a notable meal she prepared was the sensual meal that caused Pedro to be overwhelmingly attracted to her. Pedro had always loved Tita, and only agreed to marry her sister in order to be closer to her. But this meal Tita cooked was a prime example of how her powers can affect others. As a result of this meal, Tita and Pedro slept together for the first time, although he was married to Rosaura. As plainly seen, food is very important in this film. It gains its powers through magical realism that is present in the film. This leads many critics and audience members to place the film in the magical realism genre. There surely are many fantastic and magical elements in the film, but it is arguable that it is not the focus of the film. The film

Related Documents