Are you already making contingency plans for how to avoid certain family members this Thanksgiving? Looking for something to binge-watch that’ll get your mind off the news? We may have a suggestion: Cine Sony Television has programmed a special 4-day marathon of Mario Moreno (aka Cantinflas) movies.
The legendary Mexican actor, whose life got the biopic treatment a few years ago, worked tirelessly for over four decades crafting comedies that earned him comparisons to Charlie Chaplin. Often playing bumbling fools stuck in outrageous plots that showcased his natural knack for physical comedy, Cantinflas embodied and represented the Mexican campesino. Widely successful at home, he also managed to wow Hollywood. His appearance in the Oscar-winning adventure film Around the World in 80 Days earned him a Golden Globe award and further established him as a global success.
Whether you want to revisit old favorites with your family or want to see why Cantinflas is one of Mexico’s greatest entertainers, this weekend’s marathon has you covered.
The commercial-free marathon begins at 7 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day (November 24) with ‘Si yo fuera diputado’ and includes 32 more of his films. Check out our 10 recommendations below.
Los tres mosqueteros (1942)
Having returned a necklace to an actress, Cantinflas and three of his friends are hired as extras in a movie. But once he falls asleep, Cantinflas dreams up an adaptation of Alexander Dumas’ famous novel, with him in the role of D’Artagnan fighting on behalf of Queen Anne.
Romeo y Julieta (1943)
One of Shakespeare’s most well-known plays about two star-crossed lovers who wish to be together despite their family’s feud gets the Cantinflas treatment. And no, you’ve never seen a Romeo quite like this one before (or since!)
El bolero de Raquel (1957)
When his best friend dies, a shoe shiner ends up raising his child, Chavita. To do so, he enrolls in school finding there a romantic interest in his teacher, Raquel.
Cantinflas earned his second Golden Globe nomination for this George Sidney-directed musical that follows the Mexican actor as Pepe, a ranch hand intent on getting a white stallion back even if he has to go all the way to Hollywood for it.
El analfabeto (1961)
Inocencio Prieto y Calvo (Cantinflas) gets a letter telling him he’s inherited his rich uncle’s money. There’s only one problem: Inocencia is illiterate and won’t read the letter until he can do so himself.
El padrecito (1964)
Cantinflas excelled when outrageously playing fish out of water stories. That’s certainly the case here where he’s Padre Sebastián, a priest sent to a town where the parishioners don’t seem too keen on welcoming him.
El señor doctor (1965)
Playing a rural doctor with a heart of gold (he cares for his patients in ways that constantly delight them), Cantinflas shows the city slick doctors how far a little empathy can go.
Su excelencia (1967)
This Cantinflas comedy is a political allegory focusing on a quick-witted bureaucrat from the Republica De Los Cocos who ends up being courted by the dignitaries from two superpowers, Pepeslavia (a riff on the Soviet Union) and Dolaronia (an obvious allusion to the U.S.).
Don Quijote cabalga de nuevo (1973)
A loose adaptation of the Miguel de Cervantes Don Quijote tale, this international co-production cast Cantinflas as Sancho Panza, through whose eyes we see the misadventures of the famous Spanish folk hero.
El barrendero (1982)
The last ever Mexican film featuring Cantinflas follows Napoleón, a humble sweeper who finds himself the sole witness of a crime committed by art thieves.