Buena Vista Social Club
Buena Vista Social Club • 1h 45m
Directed by Wim Wenders • 1999 • Germany, United States
Traveling from the streets of Havana to the stage of Carnegie Hall, this revelatory documentary captures a forgotten generation of Cuba’s brightest musical talents as they enjoy an unexpected encounter with world fame. The veteran vocalists and instrumentalists collaborated with American guitarist and roots-music champion Ry Cooder to form the Buena Vista Social Club, playing a jazz-inflected mix of cha-cha, mambo, bolero, and other traditional Latin American styles, and recording an album that won a Grammy and made them an international phenomenon. In the wake of this success, director Wim Wenders filmed the ensemble’s members—including golden-voiced Ibrahim Ferrer and piano virtuoso Rubén González—in a series of illuminating interviews and live performances. The result is one of the most beloved documentaries of the 1990s, and an infectious ode to a neglected corner of Cuba’s prerevolutionary heritage.
Up Next in Buena Vista Social Club
BUENA VISTA SOCIAL CLUB Commentary
This audio commentary, featuring director Wim Wenders, was recorded in 1999.
Wim Wenders on BUENA VISTA SOCIAL CLUB
This interview with director Wim Wenders was conducted in Berlin in December 2016.
Radio Interviews: Eliades Ochoa
The following radio interview, recorded in 2000, features BUENA VISTA SOCIAL CLUB musician Eliades Ochoa.