Inaugural Hispanic film festival runs Oct. 16-30
Five films produced from a variety of Spanish-speaking countries will be screened Oct. 16-30 as part of the inaugural Festival de Cine, a Hispanic film festival hosted by Salve Regina.
All films will be presented in the DiStefano Lecture Hall. Tickets for individual screenings are $10, while a festival pass for all films may be purchased for $40. Tickets will be available at the door and may also be purchased online. For more information, visit the Festival de Cine website.
The following films will be featured during the festival:
Las Vacas Con Gafas/Cows Wearing Glasses
Sunday, Oct. 16 at 6 p.m.
Directed by one of the most talented emerging filmmakers coming out of the new wave of Puerto Rican cinema, “Cows Wearing Glasses” uses a subtle sense of humor to touch upon issues of aging. Marso, a lonely, eccentric painter and art professor, is losing his sight. As the world as he knows it comes to an end, he is forced to re-examine an existence filled with professional successes but unsatisfying personal relationships. He tries to reestablish a relationship with his only daughter while his thoughts are filled with longing for simpler times. The fear and uncertainty of what lies ahead have left an imprint on his psyche, and maybe even on his morals. With an impeccable performance by Daniel Lugo as Marso, “Cows Wearing Glasses” is a reflexive tale of a man facing the inevitable.
Infancia Clandestina/Clandestine Childhood
Thursday, Oct. 20 at 7 p.m.
Benjamin Avila’s first feature is an earnestly heartfelt cine-memoir based on the director/co-writer’s own tragic early life. In 1979, after years of exile, 12-year-old Juan and his family return to Argentina under fake identities. Juan’s parents and his uncle Beto are members of the Montoneros Organization, which is fighting against the Military Junta that rules the country. Because of their political activities, they are tracked down relentlessly, and the threat of capture, and even death, is constant. However, Juan’s daily life is also full of warmth and humor, and he quickly integrates into his new environment. His friends at school and the girl he has a gigantic crush on, Maria, know him as Ernesto – a name he must not forget, since his family’s survival is at stake. Juan accepts this and follows all of his parents’ rules until one day he is told that they need to move again immediately, and leave his friends and Maria behind without an explanation.
Pequenas Mentiras Piadosas/The Travel Agent
Sunday, Oct. 23 at 6 p.m.
From her tiny office overlooking the U.S. Interests Section, 58-year-old Lourdes counsels thousands of Cubans seeking a U.S. travel visa. She coaches them on answering tricky questions, fine-tuning their stories so they have a better chance of succeeding. They come from every walk of life and from all over Cuba to unveil their own life stories at the “Oficina del amor” (Office of Love), as she’s baptized it. Despite helping others to travel, she has never been able to visit her own mother, son, brothers, grandsons and nephews in Florida. “[I] quench the thirst of others every day, yet there is not a drop of water for me,” she says sadly. After a long wait, Lourdes’ time has finally come: her interview is set. Her dream to visit her dying mother, who emigrated during the 1960s, has never been so close. Will she be able to travel and finally overturn her destiny of forced separation?
El Facilitador/The Facilitator
Thursday, Oct. 27 at 7 p.m.
This political thriller about human rights is one of the most successful films to come out of Ecuador in the last few years. When Miguel, a successful businessman, learns he is ill, he asks his estranged daughter Elena to come back to Ecuador. She agrees but maintains a cold and distant relationship with him, opting to spend most of her time with friends using drugs and alcohol. After a close call with the law, Miguel sends her to spend some time with her grandfather at the family’s estate. In this nostalgic house that bring up so many memories and nightmares, Elena meets her childhood friend Galo, who now promotes water access rights for the indigenous community. Elena is compelled by their way of life and gets involved with the political organization of the community. When her nightmares intensify, Elena starts digging behind the reports of the car accident that supposedly killed her mother. Elena will gradually understand that among family secrets, crimes, corruption and dark perversions, commitment and beauty can emerge.
Un Cuento Chino/Chinese Take-Away
Sunday, Oct. 30 at 6 p.m.
Argentina’s national treasure, Ricardo Darin, is best known for his intense dramatic performances in films such as “Nine Queens,” “The Aura” and the Oscar-winning “The Secret in Their Eyes,” but his brilliant comic timing in this instant classic helped make it the biggest home-grown box office success of 2011 in Argentina. Darin plays Roberto, a gruff, anti-social loner who lords over his tiny hardware shop in Buenos Aires with a meticulous sense of control and routine, barely allowing for the slightest of customer foibles. After a chance encounter with Jun, a Chinese man who has arrived in Argentina looking for his only living relative, Roberto takes him in. Their unusual cohabitation helps Roberto bring an end to his loneliness, but not without revealing to the impassive Jun that destiny’s intersections are many and can even explain the film’s surreal opening sequence: a brindled cow falling from the sky.