FOR THE LIGHT
(Patricio Guzmán, Chile/France/Germany/ Spain/U. S.). 90 minutes. Rating: NNNNN Two very different groups of people – a team of astronomers working at an observatory in the Chilean desert and the women searching for the husbands, brothers and sons who may be buried in nearby mass graves – form the backbone of Patricio Guzmán’s thoughtful 2010 meditation on Chile’s past, present and future. The structure turns this absurd juxtaposition into a sorrowful examination of a country’s soul.
Nostalgia For The Light can make you swoon at a glorious high- definition image that seems to be a desert landscape, and turn that awe to horror as you understand what you’re really seeing. It can make you feel the haunted sorrow of a 70-year- old woman who’s been searching for her vanished husband for half her life. And it can make you wonder at the idea that the mysteries of outer space might be a convenient distraction for a nation terrified, even now, to cast its gaze inward.
This is an exhilarating, wonderful, invaluable work. Apr 30, 3: 30 pm, TIFF 4