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Hispanic Heritage Documentaries

Monday, October 8, 2012
12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.
A721, Dubinsky Student Center

Armando Guareño will kick off this week-long series of documentaries highlighting the various expressions of Hispanic culture. Documentaries showcased will be:

October 8th – 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. – Que Viva Mexico! (Hurray for Mexico)
October 8th – 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. – En El Hoyo (In the Pit)
October 9th – 12:00 p.m. to 1:45 p.m. – La Toma (The Take)
October 10th – 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. – Señorita Extraviada (Missing Young Woman) 
October 11th – 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. – Buena Vista Social Club

Armando Guareño holds a B.A. in Film and Video Communications, and an M.F.A. in Media Arts Production (Film), both from the City College of New York. He is the founder and executive director of LaCinemaFe Film Festival of New York. As a curator and film programmer, he has presented several programs at different film festivals in the world, including Boston Latino Film Festival (Boston), Mañana: The Latin American International, the Warsaw Film Festival (Poland), Latinos in USA (Spain and France), Festival de Nuevo Cine Latinoamericano de la Habana (Cuba), Muestra de Cine Documental Iberoamericano (Colombia and Panama), The Puerto Rican Queer Filmfest (Puerto Rico), and the Latin American Film Festival of Lugano (Switzerland). He was director of the International Program for the New York International Latino Film Festival. He served as director of Programming and Film Booking for the first Latino Theater in New York (Cinema Latino), owned by Clearview Cinemas. He has served as expert nominator for the Rockefeller Foundation’s Media Arts Fellowship Program and as a screening panelist for Academy of Motion Picture Arts’ Student Academy Awards. Mr. Guareño has served as a member of the jury for various film festivals, including the New Fest: The New York Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, & Transgender Film Festival, Muestra International de Cine de Santo Domingo, among others. He had worked as curator and film consultant for different cultural organizations including MoMA Museum (New York), CUNY TV (Ch. 75), Museo del Barrio (New York), El Ojo Cojo (Spain), Centro Colombo Americano (Colombia), Cinemotion (Russia), Cinemateca del Caribe (Colombia), Cine en Ballaja (Puerto Rico), Fundación Universidad Central (Colombia), among others. He is the associate producer of the feature film “Red Passport” and Producer Consultant of the acclaimed feature documentary “Maestro,” directed by Jossel Ramos. He worked as film buyer for Cinemotion Group, a Russian film and TV productions company that focuses on distribution of Russian and television products and formats.


QUE VIVA MÉXICO! (Hurray for Mexico)
Dir. Sergei Eisenstein, Grigori Aleksandrov, Russia, 1932, NR, 85 minutes, Russian
Cinematic luminary Sergei Eisenstein (“Battleship Potemkin”) conceived and directed this masterpiece montage of Mexico’s history that was financed by novelist Upton Sinclair during the Depression. As a result of financial and political pressures, the film was never completed, but the footage was later assembled at Sinclair’s behest. Structured in episodic vignettes, the picture offers a dramatic perspective on religion, culture, and society.

EN EL HOYO (In the Pit)
Dir. Juan Carlos Rulfo, Mexico, 2006, 84 minutes, Spanish with English subtitles
A Mexican legend has it that for every bridge built, the devil wants a soul in return. Dragging road fences by night, a young laborer, Natividad, sees the devil. She is one of the many workers building the upper deck of an enormous freeway that encircles Mexico City. More than one soul will perish to construct the Periferico Beltway. Only at the end of this award-winning film, in an imposing seven-minute aerial shot, do we see what all the hands have been working on: the construction site, with its chaos of concrete and steel and the roar of non-stop traffic. This is where Juan Carlos Rulfo filmed “In the Pit” for four years. It is where José, Pedro, Vicencio, Augustin, and many others toiled in the dust and noise. Where they laughed, swore and leered at the girls, where they contemplated fate, their dreams, and love, and talked about the politics that have never done anything to improve their lives. The film is edited to the hypnotizing beat of techno and machine noises that link the raw beauty of the construction site to the heartbeat of the people for whom it is way of life.

SEÑORITA EXTRAVIADA (Missing Young Woman)
Dir. Lourdes Portillo, US/Mexico, 2001, 74 minutes, Spanish with English subtitles
Winner of the special jury prize at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival, “Senorita Extraviada” chronicles the haunting tale of the more than 350 kidnapped, raped and murdered young women of Juárez, Mexico. Visually poetic, yet unflinching in its gaze, the documentary captures Juárez’s grossly underreported violence against women and tries to figure out what happened to the young women and why. The investigation includes interviews with relatives of the victims, Mexican law-enforcement officials and survivors that together help to unravel the layers of complicity that allow the brutal murders of these women. The climate of violence and impunity continues to grow, and the murders of women on the Mexico-U.S. border continue to this day.

LA TOMA (The Take)
Dir. Avi Lewis and Naomi Klein, Argentina/Canada, 2004, 87 minutes, Spanish and English, with English subtitles
One day in suburban Buenos Aires, 30 laid-off auto-parts workers walk into their now defunct factories, roll out sleeping mats and refuse to leave. All they want is to restart the silenced machines and run the factories as cooperatives. But this simple act - the take - has the power of standing the globalization debate on its head. Armed only with slingshots and an abiding faith in shop-floor democracy, the workers face off against the bosses, bankers and a whole system that sees the factories as nothing more than scrap metal for sale. The documentary is directed by Avi Lewis, one of Canada’s prominent activist journalists, and writer Naomi Klein, author of the international bestseller “No Logo, champion a radical economic manifesto for the 21st century”.

BUENA VISTA SOCIAL CLUB
Dir. Win Wenders, Germany/US/UK/France/Cuba, 1999, 105 minutes, Spanish with English subtitles
A group of legendary Cuban musicians, some in their nineties, were brought together by an American musician, Ry Cooder, to record a CD of pre-revolutionary Latin rhythms. In this documentary, we see and hear some of the songs being recorded in Havana and played in concerts in Amsterdam and New York City’s Carnegie Hall. In addition, many of the musicians reminisce about their lives in Cuba and how they got started in music.

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