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Controversial Political Content
Españolada contains references to and descriptions of controversial political ideologies as they are relevant to the subject of the page, which may be distressing for some people. User discretion is advised. This page exists for the purpose of documentation. The administrators and moderators do not necessarily endorse the philosophy associated with the aesthetic.

Españolada (loosely translated as "Typically Spanish") is a pejorative term used in Spain to broadly describe a film genre and certain pieces of art that exoticize and exaggerate things perceived as "Spanish" traits[1], or fail to capture the true essence of Spain's cultures, since most clichés tend to come from the region of Andalusia and don't fully represent the rest of the country. The earliest examples of Españolada date back to 1914 with paintings such as "Notas de color. Españolada" by Francisco Sancha as well as the Costumbrismo art movement, while the film genre of the same name was pioneered by the Francoist dictatorship during the 1930s to give foreigners a false image of Spain and encourage tourism through a romanticized view of the country. Certain stereotypes and archetypes popular in the films include bullfighters and tauromaquia, Flamenco dancers, iberian "machos", señoritas, passionate lovers, references to the Spanish Civil War or Francisco Franco's regime and a major focus on the region of Andalusia and its sunny landscapes.

The original film genre could be described as a form of propaganda used by the Francoist state to promote an idealistic view of Spain and distract the locals from the negative situation during the dictatorship, and it stayed relevant until the decade of the 60s, coinciding with the Spanish miracle, when the country's economy and tourism rapidly increased.

However, the term Españolada continues to be used today to describe any works (such as songs or modern comedy movies) that exaggerate anything seen as "Spanish" to the extreme. One of the most infamous modern Españolada filmmakers is Santiago Segura, known for his movies featuring really repetitive, mediocre and stereotypical plots.


This distorted view of Spain and its cultures likely arose in the 19th century, when Romanticism became one of the most prominent art movements throughout Europe and the so-called "Mito Español" (Spanish Myth) became a trendy topic among artists. It caused a new wave of writers from England and later France visiting Spain for inspiration for their artworks. Notably, some of these writers were Alexandre Dumas (author of The Three Musketeers) and his son, Théophile Gautier, Victor Hugo (author of Les Misérables) and Prosper Merimée. Although the country has a diverse amount of folklore and various regional cultures, those artists and writers mainly took inspiration from Andalusian folklore and its famous staple, Flamenco. Other of their inspirations from southern Spain were the Caló people (the Roma community in Andalusia), bandits and petty thieves, bullfighters and tauromaquia, traditional dancers and tonadilleras. This is one of the most important reasons why the Españolada genre is criticized; it reduces the cultures and folklores of Spain to a single region, and it's not representative of the country as a whole.

Later, the term "Españolada" was more widely used during the 1920s, when a subgenre of comedy was developed by the Francoists and other Spanish fascists. It was at its peak during the 30s, after the Spanish Civil War and during Francisco Franco's dictatorship. The Spanish media became heavily censored by the state, and such movies belonging to the Españolada genre aligned with the fascists' values. Franco's government also wanted to promote the false image in the rest of Europe, as for instance, some participants in the Eurovision song contest were forced to dye their hair black just to look more "exotic". Some of the most infamous films of the time were El turismo es un gran invento, Amor a la española, 40 grados a la sombra or Vente a Alemania, Pepe. Other influential actors were Paco Martínez Soria, Antonio Ozores, Alfredo Landa and José Luis López Vázquez. In the contemporary age, it's often interpreted as a tool of propaganda that the Spanish state used to distract citizens from the negative aspects of the dictatorship, through idealized lens. Sometimes it's also seen as a way to promote cultural assimiliation within the country, since in Spain there are multiple regions that have distinct languages and cultures. As the Francoist state sought to suppress them from mainstream media, it's only logical that they decided to only represent the culture of regions that were predominantly Spanish-speaking at the time, notably Andalusia and the regions of Castile to a lesser extent.

Nowadays Españolada carries less of its original romantic or political connotations, but it continues to be used pejoratively to describe movies, TV series and even songs that exaggerate clichés associated with the country. A lot of modern Spanish comedy movies continue to fall under this genre, notably the Spanish Affair film series (which are better known as 8 Apellidos in Spain). The modern genre often exploits repetitive tropes. A prime example of this is the filmmaker Santiago Segura, as his films rely on mediocre and overused plots, like families about to break up, annoying family members coming town, a grandfather who feels "nostalgic" for Franco's regime and references to the Spanish Civil War, children being alone and causing problems, topics surrounding youth subcultures exclusive to the country (like Canis or Pijos), etc. Also, another strange fad within modern Españolada films are cover arts or posters that feature all of the actors (of which some might be YouTubers or other celebrities in Spanish popular culture just to add more "hype" to the movies). These movies tend to be widely disliked in the country, more so in the northern regions because they're rarely represented in the genre, but somehow, they always manage to reach the lists of Top most viewed films of the year.

Visuals and Tropes[]







Older titles that were made during or before the Francoist dictatorship include:

  • Amor a la Española (1967)
  • El turismo es un gran invento (1968)
  • Forty Degrees in the Shade / 40 Grados a la Sombra (1967)
  • Monera Clara (1936)
  • Operación Secretaria (1966)
  • Sangre y Arena (1916)
  • The Devil Is a Woman / El Diablo Era Mujer (1935)
  • Vente a Alemania, Pepe (1971)

Modern titles include:

  • The Kids Are Alright / A todo tren! Destino Asturias (2021)
  • A todo tren 2: Sí, les ha pasado otra vez (2022)
  • A Moroccan Affair / Ocho Apellidos Marroquís (2023)
  • Father there is only one / Padre no hay más que uno (2019)
  • Father there is only one 2 / Padre no hay más que uno 2 (2020)
  • Heroes Wanted / Cuerpo de Élite (2016)
  • The Heifer / La Vaquilla (1985)
  • The National Shotgun / La Escopeta Nacional (1978)
  • Padre no hay más que uno 3 (2021)
  • Politicamente Incorrectos (2024)
  • Snow White / Blancanieves (2012)
  • So my Grandma's a Lesbian! / Salir del Ropero (2019)
  • Spanish Affair / Ocho Apellidos Vascos (2014)
  • Spanish Affair 2 / Ocho Apellidos Catalanes (2015)
  • Summer Vacation / Vacaciones de verano (2023)
  • Superlópez (2018)
  • Under The Same Roof / Bajo el Mismo Techo (2019)
  • Villaviciosa de al lado (2016)




  • "El regreso a Triana" by Antonio de Hoyos y Vinent (1930)