40 YE­ARS OF CU­BA'S VENICE'S IN­TER­NA­TI­O­NAL EX­HI­BI­TI­ON OF CINEMATOGRAPHIC ART

Arte por Excelencias - - Italia -

In the last edition of the 74th Venice In­ter­na­ti­o­nal Film Fes­ti­val, North Ame­ri­can director Jon Al­pert pre­sen­ted his do­cu­men­tary film Cu­ba and the Ca­me­ra­man. This fa­mous in­ves­ti­ga­ti­ve jour­na­list and do­cu­men­tary director has tra­ve­led around the world, re­por­ting from Vi­et­nam, Cam­bo­dia, Ni­ca­ra­gua, Chi­na, the Phi­lip­pi­nes, Afg­ha­nis­tan and, of cour­se, from Cu­ba. He has a very spe­ci­al bond with this country, in which he has fil­med for forty ye­ars, do­cu­men­ting an im­por­tant pe­ri­od of Cu­ban his­tory.

The do­cu­men­tary fo­cu­ses on the chan­ges and pro­ces­ses of cons­truc­ti­on of the so­ci­a­list sta­te not with a po­li­ti­cal vi­si­on, but from a very in­ti­ma­te and per­so­nal pers­pec­ti­ve. Sin­ce his first ti­me in Cu­ba in 1972, Al­pert has found se­ve­ral pe­o­ple whom he in­ter­vi­ewed again in all of his suc­ces­si­ve stays, strengt­he­ning bonds of true fri­ends­hip with them. He ma­na­ged to in­ter­vi­ew Fi­del many ti­mes, fo­llowed him on his first vi­sit to the Uni­ted Sta­tes and even saw him shortly be­fo­re his de­ath.

In Cu­ba and the Ca­me­ra­man the­re are no images of a tou­rist Cu­ba: the­re are no mo­ji­tos or bright Chev­ro­lets of the fif­ti­es, as in the tou­rist ma­ga­zi­nes. On the con­trary, the­re are en­gra­vings of pro­vin­ces, of pe­a­sants po­sing among their ca­nes and cows, of workers from the mar­gi­nal neigh­bor- ho­ods in their daily strug­gles for sur­vi­ving. The­re are fa­mi­li­es marked by the mis­for­tu­ne of the se­pa­ra­ti­on betwe­en Ha­va­na and Mi­a­mi, with chil­dren who see mot­hers le­a­ve. The most im­por­tant thing is that everyt­hing is fil­med with a lot of res­pect for them, not to show them with their dif­fi­cul­ti­es, but to show the fo­reign spec­ta­tor the tre­men­dous strength of the Cu­ban pe­o­ple, in their daily li­fe. Al­pert do­es not de­noun­ce anyt­hing, he cri­ti­ci­zes not­hing: he films and te­ac­hes, so that everyo­ne can see what they ne­ver see about Cu­ba, always with sim­pli­city and sen­si­ti­vity.

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