Cine Las Americas 2010: Day 6
Cine Las Americas is not quite ready to wrap up, with three more days remaining. That doesn't mean the films playing at the MACC, Regal Metropolitan and Alamo Drafthouse on South Lamar are any less compelling.
Manuel Carballo's La Profecia De Los Justos (The Last of the Just) was a Mexican/Spanish joint effort religious thriller along the lines of The Da Vinci Code centering on a man who finds he's at the heart of an ancient prophesy. While it telegraphed the twists too much, and had some of the most frustrating subtitles I've seen in a while, it's the kind of film that makes one want to see more from these filmmakers. Based on the Q&A, they want to bring genre filmmaking back to Mexico and make the world stop seeing "Mexican" as a genre itself. I wish I recorded the audio of the Q&A, it was worth listening to on its own.
Rigoberto Pérezcano's Norteado (Northless) is probably my favorite narrative feature of Cine Las Americas so far. A recurring theme has been "low and slow" this festival, and Norteado epitomizes that, with the the only musical soundtrack coming from jukeboxes or radios, save the beginning and the end. The plot is simple: an Oaxacan man wants to cross the borders. Between his many attempts, the bonds he makes in Tijuana force him and his newfound friends to confront their relationships. It's a simple, beautifully told story that's deftly handled, as it could easily be tedious.
Today's films give you several options; there are some hard choices to make, with several great movies to choose from. No matter what venue you park yourself, you're going to see some mind-expanding films:
- Whales Of Gold and Rehje play a double feature. The first is a great short of the longish variety about ecotourism and the impact on local communities. Rehje is a cinéma vérité style slice of life in transition documentary on so many levels, including cultural, ecological and feminist. It's a provocative doc that will likely result in a lot of dialogue afterwards, especially among women. Actually both are, so what better setting than the MACC?
- The Panorama Documentary shorts include CuBata and Solidarity in Saya: An Afro Bolivian Movement, two insightful and eye-opening pieces that will expand your worldview. (MACC)
- El bosque (The Forest) plays again at the Metropolitan. This slow burn of a twisty story is in competition, and will likely stay with you.
- Miguel Gomes' Aquele Querido Mes De Agosto (Our Beloved Month Of August) plays Alamo South Lamar. This tale of a father, a daughter, and a travelling band in Portugal played the 2008 Cannes Directors’ Fortnight program.