Archive for the ‘2009’ Category


Our Disappeared

Saturday 7 Nov 4:00pm Riverside Studios
Dir. Juan Mandelbaum, USA, 2008, 99 mins, colour & B/W

Awards: The Phoenix: Outside the Frame Gerald Peary’s Top Ten Films of 2008, USA Cine Golden Eagle Awards, Washington, USA

Cast: Sabina Garciarena, Veronica Palaccini,
Lucas Crespi

Argentine documentary maker Juan Mandelbaum, returns from exile after he discovers that his former girlfriend was among the thousands murdered by the junta in the 1970’s. In a painfully personal exposé, he uncovers her story and that of a whole lost generation.


Viva Mexico

Sunday 8 Nov 8:15pm Riverside Studios
Dir. Nicolas Defosee, Mexico, 2009, 120 mins,

Awards: Audience Award: Tepoztlan Film Festival, Mexico

A devastating indictment of globalisation which is marginalising the indigenous peoples of Mexico, their culture destroyed or commoditised by central government. Through this documentary, which profiles the many campaigns by organisations seeking to give a voice to the voiceless, the people cry out for peaceful resistance to the racism and poverty being imposed on them. Moving and revelatory viewing.


The Loss/La Perdida

Saturday 14th Nov 7:30pm Bolivar Hall
Dir. Javier Angulo and Enrique Gabriel,
Argentina/Spain, 2009, 98 mins, colour

The state terrorism in the Argentina of the mid-seventies is a still unhealed wound in the body of Argentine society. The murder of at least 20,000 people, though still unpunished, has been eloquently exposed and discussed. This feature length documentary tells of those who fled the genocide and suffered the pain of complete separation from their lives, loves and culture. The profound power of this film resides in the wider insight that, to this day, the whole of Argentinean society, culture and body politic remains impoverished by the banishment, during that time of horror, of a whole class of thinking people.


I am Happy

Tuesday 10 Nov 8:30pm Dulwich Paradiso Film Society

Sunday 8 Nov 4:15pm Riverside Studios
Dir. Soraya Umewaka, Brazil/USA, 2008, 66 mins, colour

Far from being just another example of ‘poverty porn’, this beautiful documentary reveals the vivacious culture of Rio’s slum communities in the face of the prejudice and deprivation suffered by the poor. A positive representation of the decent and hardworking folk of the favelas, and a joyous celebration of the power of human creativity.


Sons of Cuba/Hijos de Cuba

Wednesday 11 Nov 8:00pm
Riverside Studios
Dir. Andrew Lang, UK, 2009, 88 mins, colour

This utterly extraordinary, unflinching feature documentary provides a unique and vivid insight into the lives of young men training for Cuba’s national boxing squad, their hopes for themselves, the rigours of their lives and their unwavering patriotism. The viewer is left with the powerful impression of a masculine identity, composed of pride, skill and discipline, forged in the furnace of aspiration and ideological rigour. Essential viewing.


Crossing Borders/Cruzando Fronteras

Saturday 7 Nov 2:00pm Riverside Studios
Saturday 8 Nov 2:00pm Riverside Studios
Wednesday 11 Nov 6:30pm Riverside Studios
Dir. Sofia Buchuck, UK, 2007, 20 mins, colour

The complex experience of being a Latin American in the UK is explored in a kaleidoscope of words and music, evoking the sense of joy and cultural pride, tinged with the pain of separation, common to this great, diverse diaspora.

the-sea_el mar

The Sea/El Mar

Tuesday 10 Nov 7:30pm Bolivar Hall
Dir. Maricarmen Merino, Costa Rica, 2009, 14 mins, colour

A boy, accompanied by his pet goldfish, travels all day with his mother to receive his birthday present; a visit to the sea. A marvellous script and superb performances, beautifully filmed, add up to a small, poignant masterpiece.


It’s popular/Es popular

Sunday 8 Nov 2:00pm Riverside Studios
Wednesday 11 Nov 6:30pm
Riverside Studios
Dir. Carlos Osuna, Colombia, 2009, 3 mins, colour

Youthful, vibrant and witty animation to an original soundtrack, combining great visual panache with brilliant technique. Great fun!


Amor en Transito

Saturday 7 Nov 6:15pm Riverside Studios
Tuesday 10 Nov 6:30pm Riverside Studios
Dir. Lucas Blanco, Argentina, 2009, 91 mins,

Cast: Sabina Garciarena, Veronica Palaccini,
Lucas Crespi

Lucas Blanco’s feature is essential viewing. Time, space and identity twist and turn as the paths of Mercedes, Ariel, Juan and Micaela cross and re-cross. Music and image form an iridescent hall of mirrors in which the preconceptions of the characters are transformed into something quite other. Each is haunted by the past, yet unable to act decisively. Through their encounters, the narrative subtly traces their reawakening to the infinite possibilities that life and renewed desire bring. You will leave the cinema stirred, maybe a little disturbed, but, ultimately, uplifted; and will carry this film with you, for a long time.


The Engulfed Cathedral

Monday 9 Nov 7:30pm Bolivar Hall
Dir. Yolyanko William, Cuba, 2007, 6 mins, colour

Stunning animated imagery evoking the spirit of rebirth and exploration.

Santiago tiene una Pena

Santiago tiene una Pena

Sunday 8 Nov 4:15pm Riverside Studios
Sunday 15 Nov 1:30pm Duke of York
Dirs. Diego Riquelme Davidson and Felipe Orellana Pena, Chile, 2008, 40 mins colour

Awards: Best Documentary: Chiloe film Festival, Chile Best Documentary: Pedro Sienna Award, Chile

The unparalleled power of music to touch the soul amidst the alienation of city life is brilliantly delineated in this imaginatively constructed documentary which follows three young musicians, Claudio, Angélina and Estaban, making ends meet by busking on Santiago’s gigantic transport system. With little commentary, it is the pure collision of music and image which eloquently expounds the themes


A Fairy Tale

A dark but charming parable about two children exploring the different layers of the city.


Children of the Amazon

Friday 9 Nov 6:30pm Riverside Studios

Stunningly visual, compelling, multi-award winning and deeply personal documentary as Brazilian filmmaker Denise Zmekhol revisits the Amazonian peoples she had photographed fifteen years earlier. Following in the footsteps of the late activist and campaigner Chico Mendez, she discovers a terrible erosion of both the physical environment and the indigenous culture. Hard but essential viewing.



Friday 6 Nov 6:30pm Riverside Studios
Dir. Diego Rougier, Chile, 2009, 14 mins, colour
Cast: Carolina Varleta, Inigo Urrutia, Gustavo

An achingly funny and brilliantly choreographed dance between characters and camera, in which the complex relationships of an extended family are laid bare through their reactions to the mysterious ‘Escorbo’. Witty and inspired filmmaking, cleverly exploiting the full potential of digital production.


Debut and Farewell

Sunday 8 Nov 2:00pm Riverside Studios
Saturday 14 Nov 1:30pm Duke of York

Where does performance end and life begin? Theatre, cinema and relationships become tangled in this intriguing and exquisitely crafted short drama.


Victims of Democracy

Tuesday 10 Nov 7:30pm Bolivar Hall
Dir. Stella Jacobs, Venezuela, 2008, 42 mins, colour

Political repression in 1970s Venezuela is seldom discussed. This stirring documentary centres on the disappearance, murder and eventual disinterment of two individual victims of Rómulo Betancourt’s ‘dirty war’ against the left. A testament to victims of impunity, across the world.