Recent critically and commercially acclaimed Latin American films such as XXY, Contracorriente, and Plan B create an affective and bodily connection with viewers that elicits in them an emotive and empathic relationship with queer identities.
Referring to these films as New Maricon Cinema, Vinodh Venkatesh argues that they represent a distinct break from what he terms Maricon Cinema, or a cinema that deals with sex and gender difference through an ethically and visually disaffected position, exemplified in films such as Fresa y chocolate, No se lo digas a nadie, and El lugar sin limites. Covering feature films from Argentina, Chile, Cuba, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, the United States, and Venezuela, New Maricon Cinema is the first study to contextualize and analyze recent homo-/trans-/intersexed-themed cinema in Latin America within a broader historical and aesthetic genealogy.
Working with theories of affect, circulation, and orientations, Venkatesh examines key scenes in the work of auteurs such as Marco Berger, Javier Fuentes-Leon, and Julia Solomonoff and in films including Antes que anochezca and Y tu mama tambien to show how their use of an affective poetics situates and regenerates viewers in an ethically productive cinematic space.
He further demonstrates that New Maricon Cinema has encouraged the production of "gay friendly" commercial films for popular audiences, which reflects wider sociocultural changes regarding gender difference and civil rights that are occurring in Latin America.