Buena Vista Social Club 1999 Criterion Collection
Long before current heartthrob Ricky Martin or even Latino star Selena were making waves, a group of talented musicians were creating wonderful music along the shores and in the capital of pre-Castro Cuba. All but since forgotten, many of them, including the likes of singers Ibrahim Ferrer and Omara Portuondo, guitarist Compay Segundo, pianist Ruben Gonzalez and several others were brought together in 1997 by acclaimed producer and musician Ry Cooder to record an album, "The Buena Vista Social Club". Some of the long-lived performers on the recording hadn't played their instruments for more than ten years.

In this relaxed and entertaining documentary directed by Wim Wenders, the same group gathers to record a solo album featuring vocalist Ibrahim Ferrer whom Cooder has lionized as "the Cuban Nat King Cole." Among the colorful musicians profiled are 90-year-old guitarist Compay Segundo gifted pianist Ruben Gonzalez, and versatile singer Manuel Licea. They talk about their childhood and how they came to become musicians.

The high points in the documentary are the highlights of the Buena Vista Social Club performing shows in Amsterdam and at New York's Carnegie Hall in 1998. This delightful film is a tribute to cross-cultural cooperation and the variety of Cuban music.

BD50 + 2xDVD9 | 1080p AVC, NTSC | 01:45:21 | 40.2 Gb + 13.4 Gb + 3% rec
Language: Espanol
Subtitles: English
Genre: Documentary, Music

• Audio commentary from 1999 featuring director Wim Wenders
• New interview with Wenders (26:15)
• Interview from 1998 with musician Compay Segundo on his career and the world of Cuban music (59:50)
• 12 Radio interviews from 2000 featuring musicians Ibrahim Ferrer, Ruben Gonzalez, Eliades Ochoa, Omara Portuondo, and others
• Four Additional scenes (5:54, 3:10, 7:06, 6:19)
• Trailer (1:34)