Our 7th Film Week took place from Monday September 19 to Sunday 25, 2016 at the University of Victoria’s Cinecenta. Once again we brought to Victoria a sample of the best movies produced today in Latin America and Spain. The 2016 line-up featured a documentary about a Mexican photographer, a suspenseful drama from Guatemala, psychological and political thrillers from Chile, Argentina and Peru, a family comedy from Brazil, and a comedy-drama from Spain. Thanks to all who attended this year's event. We look forward to seeing you again in 2017.
Check out the synopses and trailers below.
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Winner of the Silver Bear at the 2015 Berlin Film Festival, Ixcanul is Jayro Bustamente debut film. This well-crafted drama revolves around María, a 17-year-old Mayan woman living on the slopes of an active volcano in Guatemala. Maria’s parents, struggling to survive, have arranged for their daughter to be married. Although she is betrothed to the manager of the local plantation, Maria harbours feelings for seasonal worker Pepe. The teenager dreams of seeing ‘the city’, but Maria’s status as an indigenous woman does not, traditionally, allow her to go out into the wider world. A deeply thoughtful tale of an ancient civilization living in modern times and the price to be paid when one meets the other.
Stay after the first show for a Q & A with Lorenzo Magzul, Ph.D., a Kaqchikel Mayan whose interests include food security and climate change affecting Guatemala’s indigenous peoples
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Magallanes, an aged Peruvian taxi driver, formerly an aide to a military officer in the days of the Peruvian government repression against the Shining Path insurgency in the 1980s, unexpectedly re-encounters a young indigenous woman who was victimized by his superior. Set in contemporary Lima, Magallanes is the story of a terrible secret and its long-term effects on the lives of two people trapped in their own socio-economic chokeholds. Director Salvador del Solar employs an engaging combination of moody atmospherics and efficient storytelling, supported by some of the most renowned actors hailing from Latin America (Fernando Luppi, Damián Alcázar and Magaly Solier).
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On a secluded hill in a small seaside town live four unrelated men and the woman who tends to the house and their needs. All former priests, they have been sent to this quiet exile to purge sins of their pasts. Their fragile stability is disrupted by the arrival of a newly-disgraced counterpart who moves into their house, and an emissary of the Church who seeks to understand the effects of their isolation. Both bring with them the outside world from which the men have long been removed, and the secrets they had thought deeply buried. The Club is acclaimed director Pablo Larraín’s taut commentary on individual responsibility, organized religion and the combustible combination of the two. The Club was screened in the main competition of the 65th Berlin International Film Festival where it won the Jury Grand Prix.
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Director in attendance! Stay for a Q & A after the first show.
Join Trisha Ziff for a talk entitled "Women documentary filmmakers in Mexico today" on Friday September 23 from 2.30 to 3.20 PM in Clearihue A308 at the UVic campus. The talk is in English and open to the community.
This documentary by award-winning British-Mexican director Trisha Ziff is about Enrique Metinides, a photo-reporter who worked for many decades for the most important tabloids in Mexico City. Obsessed with photographing accidents and crime scenes, he discovered that the fate of others was his own way of connecting to life. The more we try to understand him and acknowledge our own compelling fascination with his images, the more we realize that we too are being lured into the Metinides Gaze. The man who saw too much, winner this year of the Ariel (Mexico’s equivalent to the Oscar) for best documentary, is a timely film about photography, violence and ethics in today’s mass media.
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After leaving her daughter Jessica in a small town in Pernambuco to be raised by relatives, Val spends the next 13 years working as a nanny to Fabinho in São Paulo. As Fabinho’s college entrance exams roll around, her daughter calls and gives her what seems to be a second chance. Jessica wants to come to São Paulo to take her college entrance exams as well. Filled with joy as well as apprehension, Val gets ready, with the wholehearted support of her employers, for the long-dreamed moment of being near her daughter again. But when Jessica arrives, cohabitation is not easy… Set in current Brazil, The second mother is an endearing family comedy that reflects on the social and emotional ties that binds us.
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The disappeared — los desaparecidos — are words that carry special resonance in Argentina. Long associated with the crimes of the military junta of the late 1970s, the term takes on a different, but no less chilling, meaning in the hands of renowned filmmaker Pablo Trapero in this political and family drama. Based on a true story that rocked Argentina, The Clan tells the almost unbelievable tale of the Clan Puccio, a seemingly normal middle-class family who kidnapped wealthy people off the street. The Clan was Argentina’s submission for the Best Foreign Film at the Oscar competition in 2015.
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When Julián receives an unexpected visit from his childhood friend Tomás, the encounter is bittersweet. This reunion, their first meeting in many years, will also be their last. Diagnosed with cancer, Julián has decided to focus on putting his affairs in order: distributing his possessions, finalizing his funeral arrangements, and finding a home for his beloved dog, Truman. It's this final task that is causing him the greatest heartbreak. With the collaboration of acting greats Argentine Ricardo Darín and Spanish Javier Cámara, Gay brings humour and sensitivity to this personal story, creating a singular reflection on friendship and acceptance at the end of life.
The Hispanic Film Society of Victoria was established in 2012 with the aim of promoting Latin American and Spanish Cinema in Victoria through the organization of an annual Film Week at Cinecenta.
The Society continues the work of the organizing committee which has been in charge of setting up the Latin American and Spanish Film Week since 2010. This is a cultural event that has already become an annual tradition in our city.
By becoming a Society, the members aim to engage more closely the diverse communities interested in cinema and the cultures of the Hispanic world.
We invite the public to attend the annual Film Week as well as getting in touch with us to learn more about our activities and the possibilities for volunteering.
The 7th Latin American and Spanish Film Week was organized by the Hispanic Film Society of Victoria and sponsored by the Department of Hispanic and Italian Studies, the Division of Continuing Studies and the Faculties of Social Sciences, Humanities and Fine Arts of the University of Victoria, CRD Arts Development Service, BC Arts Council, and the Consulate General of Mexico in Vancouver.
We are grateful to community member Randall Recinos-Drago for the design of the poster.
Our Film Week has been featured in radio programs and the news media. Check them out:
If you wish to contact the organizers or get more information about the Film Week email firstname.lastname@example.org, or use the space below