Here, you can find the programmes for our past and upcoming Latin American Film Festivals, and get a taste for the rich heritage of cinema that the region can offer. For updates on the festival, be sure to join us on Facebook, and keep an eye on our events page.
Each festival is coordinated and curated by LASC member Tadhg Ó Cruadhlaoich.
16th Irish Latin American Film Festival (2015)
The Latin American Film Festival continues to make short films, independent projects, and documentaries from one of the most fascinating regions on earth available to Irish audiences.
The diverse topics that make up the programme together form a festival that will join audiences in Dublin,Limerick, Birr, and Derry with those in Latin America.
Free admission and all welcome.
Chile is the country focus of 2015. We travel all the way back to 1991 for the screening of Scraps of life by Gayla Jamison and fast forward to 2015 for the World premiere of King of Trains by Richard O’Connell. (Richard had a short film Las Maravillistas feature in The 12th Irish Latin American Film Festival, 2011).
The Focus on Chile will be introduced by Chilean Roberta Bacic in Birr and Derry. Roberta will also lead a workshop in Birr and Derry on arpilleras (the embroidery used by Mothers of the Disappeared during and after the Pinochet dictatorship).
This bilingual festival will also celebrate Irish film production in two shorts from Trócaire and the closing documentary, La Violencia, about the atrocities in Guatemala committed under the dictatorship of Efraín Rios Montt.
As always, the festival acknowledges the creativity and storytelling via film, and offers its sincere thanks to the filmmakers for their goodwill and the honour to screen their films in this festival.
6.00 pm – LATIN SHORTS [93′]
8.00 pm – Sundays of Sorrow: Inside Medellin’s War [14.5′]
Christmas with Chaves [2′]
Tango Underpants [14′]
Amazon Soul [30′]
Maradona ’86 [22′]
Day 2 – Focus on Chile
6.00 pm – LATIN [Chile] SHORTS [78′]
8.00 pm – Los Aviones [4.5′]
Scraps of Life [24′]
Chile’s Student Uprising [36′]
6.00 pm – LATIN [EU] SHORTS [82′]
8.00 pm – Toñitas[20′]
30 years of silence [13′]
La Violencia [69′]
Habeas Corpus [Brazil/2014/19′], Leandro Afonso
Three years after their last meeting, Eva, Nina and Joao are at a beach house. Filmed on location at Salvador-BA
Push/Pull/Recover [Cuba/Canada/2013/3′], Terra Long
Made at a process cinema workshop in Escuela de Cine, San Antonio de Los Banos, Cuba, Push/Pull/Recover is a meditation on motion through stillness with breath. It is shot in single frames on 16mm and hand painted. No Hay Pan [Chile/2012/20′] Macarena Monrós.
Momentos [Argentina/2012/5′], Pablo Polledri
“Life is what happens to you when you are busy making other plans” (John Lennon)
Facing Up [El Salvador/2015/8′], Elam Forrester
Former guerrilla fighter talks about her life as a girl growing up in the Central American country of El Salvador, the discrimination she faced and what drove her to fight for change in a country ravaged by inequality and genocide during the 1980’s. Decades later, she explains how she is continuing to fight for equality in her community today.
The director will introduce the film and lead a post screening Q&A
Esa Música [Colombia/2013/27′], Dario Vejarano
Omar, a construction worker, is determined to find out the melody of a song amidst the noise of the recording that reminds him of the life he once had with his family.
Pallay [Bolivia/2013/4′], Patricia Aramayo Mariscal
In this short animation, a weaver of Jalq’ decides to abandon the monotonous making of a traditional carpet.
Watita [Peru/2013/10′], Alonso LLosa
Watita is about a Quechua couple, Victor and Katia, who move from a small rustic town to the large city, overlooking the Andes. The couple meet Watita, a young girl who helps her grandfather run an old hostel. After the couple decide to spend the night there, Katy will discover Victor’s true reasons for wanting to take this sudden trip.
Rio Cidade Olímpica [Brazil/2012/7′], Claudio Felicio Pifano Silva
Mock-documentary about Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro 2016. The government shows one side, but not everything about the global event is positive
Mi Corazón [Puerto Rico/US/2013/10′], Marielle Woods
An old jeep bounces along a muddy dirt road, cutting a winding path through the calm claustrophobia of dense jungle. The travellers are a young American couple, content in life and love, but completely unprepared for the catastrophe that lies just around the bend.
Sundays of Sorrow: Inside Medellín’s War [Ireland/2013/14.5′], Ben Keenan & Eoghan Rice
‘Maria’ lives in Medellín, a city which for decades was at the forefront of Colombia’s conflict. Her every move was controlled by vicious drug gangs who ruthlessly maintained power over the people. Here, she tells her incredible story. Trócaire
Christmas with Chavez [US/2013/2′], Jim Finn
Just before Christmas 2006, Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez came to the United Nations and delivered his “smells of sulfur” speech about Bush for all the children of America.
También Las Flores Mueren [US/2014/3.5′], Marilyn Brindis
A wandering musician trapped in the New Mexican desert is taken hostage by a young woman heavily involved in the Mexican cartel.
Tango Underpants [Australia/2013/14′], Miranda Edmonds & Khrob Edmonds
Carolyn, a young Australian backpacker, travels to Buenos Aires, to do the tango!
She discovers not only the wonders of the tango and the people, but also the vital importance of the right underwear.
Amazon Soul [England/2013/30′], Sarah Begum
Filmmaker Sarah Begum travelled into the heart of the Ecuadorian Amazon to share the everyday lives of the Huaorani people. It captures the beauty and resilience of a culture, which has endured in the heart of the rainforest, caught between the demands of modernity and a determination to preserve their ancient ways of living. The enormous empathy and good humour shared between the filmmaker and the Huaorani makes for a genuinely affecting portrait. The film also focuses on the outside forces that threaten their continued existence – oil interests.
Maradona ’86 [England/2014/22′], Sam Blair
In the 1986 World Cup, Diego Armando Maradona redefined what is possible for one man to accomplish on the soccer field. Already a figure of notoriety, but with one failed World Cup behind him, the Argentinean took possession of the international stage in Mexico, the spotlight rarely drifting from him as he wrote an indelible history with his feet and, of course, with a ‘hand from God’. Maradona ’86 is a fascinating, evocative, and operatic portrait, revealing Maradona’s inner complexity and contradictions while basking in the joy and passion of his performance on the pitch, as he wrote his name into soccer history forever.
The Chilean Elvis [Chile/2013/10′], Marcelo Kiwi
Marcelo Rossi, a 78-year-old Elvis impersonator, walks the streets of Chile as if he were the King himself. We follow him as he performs for a modern audience that is not quite sure how to take him in. Marcelo’s love and criticism of the deceased rock star reveal his loneliness and the challenges he’s faced living on while Elvis has passed.
Common Threads [Canada/2014/13′], Gayla Jamison
Common Threads is an introduction to story cloths, narrative textiles made by women of diverse cultures in far-flung countries who have suffered the violence and injustice of genocide, war, torture, the murder of loved ones. The artists stitch their stories to protest, to resist, to heal, and remember. The narrative textile is used by Irene Mc Williams in Belfast to express her desire for peace.
Roberta Bacic, Cross Community Quilt Project, was a consultant for this film and will introduce the Focus on Chile in Derry on 7th April and the following day (along with an arpilleras workshop at 4.00 pm) in Birr.
Israel [Chile/2012/11′], Michel Toledo
July 17, 2011. The Chilean soccer team faces Venezuela at the quarter-finals of the Copa América. Whilst the entire country is awaiting the game, a man enters the Santiago subway and without due reason, he pulls out a gun and kills several people. Meanwhile, life takes it course and the soccer game continues, and nothing seems to alter the state of things.
La Última Escena [Chile/2014/19′], Mijael Bustos Gutiérrez
Heine Mix Toro (78), an eminent former playwright and theatre director, after his return from exile during Pinochet’s dictatorship, has been marginalised and lives as a hermit in his humble shack with his dogs.
Nae Pasarán [Scotland/2013/14′], Felipe Bustos Sierra
In a small Scottish town in 1974, factory workers refuse to carry out repairs on warplane engines in an act of solidarity against the violent military coup in Chile.
“King of trains” [Chile/2015/10′], Richard O Connell
“El Rey de Trenes” is a portrait of Carlos Soto, train builder and children’s entertainer. Carlos lives in San Bernardino, a poor town on the outskirts of the Chilean capital, Santiago. Kids there do not get the opportunity to go to theme parks or fun rides and so one day nearly forty years ago, Carlos decided to build a train to entertain the children from his neighbourhood. A welder by trade, Carlos has built 14 trains and made a living from entertaining the local children ever since he built the first one. Today he contemplates retirement, and whether or not he wants his son to take over the family business.
Los Aviones [England/2014/4.5′], Pablo Navarrete.
Chilean musician, Yuri Betancourt performs Andrés Calamaro’s song, ‘Los Alamos’.
Scraps of Life [US/1991/24′], Gayla Jamison
Over three thousand people were forcibly detained or murdered in Chile during the Pinochet years, according to official government statistics, which is acknowledged to be a very conservative figure. More than 40,000 Chileans have been identified by the current government as having been detained and tortured. Although the dictatorship has finally come to an end, it has left a legacy of bereaved mothers, sisters and wives. These surviving women come together to demand truth and justice from the new government. They sew murals out of scraps of fabrics, called arpilleras during and after the dictatorship that record Chile’s bloody history. The arpilleristas told a truth that the dictatorship wanted to keep secret and so they were not only in personal danger, but despised and posed a threat. These women’s groups are a far cry from traditional women’s sewing circles. Many women have become politically active, determined to wrest the truth about the fate of their loved ones from the labyrinth of government bureaucracy. Some undertake projects to help the poor and to educate their country’s youth. As we meet the women and hear their tragic stories, we marvel at their strength. Their unique creations are their insurance that the deaths will be remembered by future generations. Picture: Gayla Jamison and Mario Díaz filming the unmarked graves of the Detained-Disappeared in the Cementerio General in Santiago, Chile, 1989.
Chile‘s Student Uprising [England/2014/36’], Roberto Navarrete
Chile’s Student Uprising’ tells the story of the student protests taking place in Chile today demanding a free and state-funded education system and radical change in society. The film puts the protests in their historical context of widespread dissatisfaction with the economic model put in place under the Pinochet dictatorship (1973-1990), but that still remains largely in place.
The film’s director travelled to Chile between 2011 and 2013 to speak to then student leaders such as Camila Vallejo and Giorgio Jackson, and also to ordinary students, to explore why their protests have caused such effect in Chile and inspired others in the country and beyond.
Ana turns 14 [Sweden/Guatemala/2013/20′], Shari Sabel Strandmark
Ana and her family live in a suburb outside of Guatemala City. The day Ana turns 14 she realizes the difference between the life she wants to live and the one she is expected to live.
The old Santiago and the sea [France/2012/3′], Julíen Seze
It has been weeks since the old Santiago didn’t fish anything. In the village, the rumour is spreading that his time is over… ”
Cuba – sun, sex and socialism [England/2014/17′], Diana Taylor
This short documentary shows the reality of life in Havana behind the tourist tinsel.
The Director will be in attendance in Dublin
El Carro Azul [Germany/Cuba/2014/20′], Valerie Heine
His grandmother’s death brings Hansel from San Francisco back to Cuba to take care of his brother Marcos. The two brothers have grown apart. With the help of an old family game Hansel attempts to restore his brother’s trust that has been lost over the years.
Gorila Baila [Spain/2013/15′], Eugenio Canevari
Buenos Aires 1977 – Dina is kidnapped during the dictatorship. Her neighbour, Maria Carmen is reminiscing 30 after the kidnapping.
A voice for freedom in Chaquetá [Ireland/2013/7′], Eoghan Rice & Ben Keenan
For over 50 years, farmers in Colombia have been caught in a violent conflict between the army, leftist guerrillas and right-wing paramilitaries. In Chaquetá, farmers are organising to rebuild their lives. Trócaire
Toñita’s [US/2014/21′], Beyza Boyacioglu & Sebastian Diaz
Toñita’s is a glance at the Puerto Rican community and Nuyorican culture in Brooklyn, through the last remaining Puerto Rican social club in South Williamsburg, its owner Maria Toñita and its regulars.
30 Years of Silence [Guatemala/ 2013/13′], Elena Hermosa
Elena Hermosa travelled to Guatemala on behalf of Trócaire to document the landmark trial of former dictator General José Efraín Ríos Montt and his former chief of Military Intelligence, Mauricio Rodríguez Sánchez for genocide and crimes against humanity.
Guatemala was the scene of one of the most violent armed conflicts in Latin America between 1960 and 1996. It is estimated that 200,000 people were murdered, 45,000 people disappeared and over one million people were displaced.
This documentary tells the story of the Maya Ixil ethnic community’s fight to bring Ríos Montt to justice. 1,771 Ixil Mayan’s were reportedly murdered under Ríos Montt’s regime, amounting to 33% of their total population.
La Violencia [Ireland/2014/69′], Pia Janning & Til Frohlich
La Violencia documents the lives of the indigenous Mayan women of Guatemala. Guatemala is explored from its violent history to its current fragile state, through the personal stories of indigenous women and activists and narrated by acclaimed actor Aidan Gillen. Guatemala’s armed conflict tore the country apart for 36 years, claiming the lives of over 200,000 women, men and children. In 2013 Guatemala became the first country in history to put its former head of state on trial for genocide in a domestic court. The accused is General Rios Montt, who ruled the country during the most brutal period of the conflict, known as La Violencia. The trial has been marred by outside pressure from the powerful elite and has pushed the justice system to its limits.