Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Secret in their Eyes/ El secreto de sus ojos

The Secret in their Eyes

Director: Juan Jose Campanella, Argentina

Ricardo Darin, Soledad Villamil, Guillermo Francella, Javier Godino, Pablo Rago.

I went with a friend to the Angelika to see the Argentinian movie "The Secret in their Eyes" and I suggest you do the same. You will enjoy the complexity of the intertwined stories and the good acting. The theatre was packed, thanks to the Oscar the movie received for Best Foreign Film. I was so proud...I felt like shouting: Viva Argentina!!!

How many movies from my country have opened in a commercial theatre in Manhattan? Few. I remember Nine Queens which also starred Ricardo Darin, one of the leading Argentinian actors. But it's hard to find a Latin American movie playing in a theatre and the rare opportunities are usually confined to film festivals. That's why I like to promote Latin American cinema.

"El secreto de sus ojos" centers on a violent crime that took place in Buenos Aires in 1974. We get a glimpse of the political times that preceded the 1976 dictatorship. Isabelita Peron appears on a TV screen and the character of Gomez as her bodyguard caused me to have goosebumps. The movie switches from past to present portraying the country 25 years earlier. The corruption of the legal system and its consequences are at the core of the movie.

Ricardo Darin plays Exposito, a court investigator who after retiring wants to write a novel about a case that he investigated 25 years before. Soledad Villamil plays the character of his boss. Lawyer Menandez-Hastings, an attractive woman that is the love of his life, but whom he never dared to date. Argentinians can translate the name Menandez-Hastings as indicating upper class upbringing, money and power.

Campanella also depicts the urban differences among the poor who need the train or -as an irony of the film- bus 96 to reach Capital Federal coming from the poor suburbs of Laferrere, Isidro Casanova or Gonzalez Catan to work as construction workers or maids.

In a country like Argentina that has gone through six dictatorships and many financial crises in the 20th century we need to deal with many painful memories, and that is why the issue of memory is central to our lives. How we remember, what we remember, what we choose to forget, and how we deal with victims and murderers are issues still current. Just recently "The Museum of Memory" ("El Museo de la Memoria") was unveiled in Buenos Aries, at the ESMA (Escuela de Mecanica de la Armada) the largest concentration camp that functioned during the last dictatorship (1976-1983.)

For more information (in English) please visit the site:


Tuesday, April 20, 2010


A new exhibition of Latin American photographers opens today at Instituto Cervantes.
It's free and open to the public.

Fotografía emergente latinoamericana

20 de abril

Instituto Cervantes Nueva York
211E 49th st, entre las avenidas 2 y 3.
Nueva York, NY 10002


El Instituto Cervantes Nueva York se complace en anunciar la recepción
inaugural de Resiliencia, una exposición de fotografía latinoamericana
emergente considerada una de las mejores muestras de arte realizadas
en España el año pasado
. Ganadora del Premio del Público M2 EL Mundo
como mejor exposición de PhotoEspaña 2009, Resiliencia presenta la
obra de diez jóvenes fotógrafos latinoamericanos que participaron en
de la sección Discoveries del prestigioso festival de fotografía. De
un total de 342 fotógrafos de la región, un jurado nombrado por
PHotoEspaña hizo una selección de 40 proyectos para participar en la
panorámica de portafolios que tuvo lugar en los Centros Culturales de
España en Ciudad de México y Lima. Posteriormente, el comisario
designado por el Instituto Cervantes, Claudi Carreras, identificó el
trabajo de 10 creadores para componer esta exposición que representa
un recorrido heterodoxo por el quehacer fotográfico contemporáneo de
América Latina, donde todo tipo de estilos y temas encuentran su

En Latinoamérica el proceso artístico surge en medio del caos
político, económico y social. La mayoría de obras alude, desde una
variedad de puntos de vista, a la capacidad de adaptación y
supervivencia de una sociedad que está sujeta a constantes
fluctuaciones; una necesidad de adaptación que afecta no solo los
puntos de referencia de estos proyectos, sino también a los artistas y
sus modos de representar.

Los fotógrafos escogidos por PHE Discoveries, Ciudad de México son
Dante Busquets, Ramiro Chaves, Livia Corona, Nicola Okin Frioli, Oscar
Fernando Gómez Rodríguez, Mark Powell y Pavka Segura. Los
seleccionados por PHE Discoveries Lima son Ana Cecilia Gonzales Vigil,
Morfi Jiménez y Tomás Munita.

Thursday, April 15, 2010





April 16-23, 2010 with special events April 7 & 9

New York City, March 26, 2010. The Havana Film Festival New York (HFFNY) launches its second decade, April 16-23, with a program of award-winning films, panel discussions, and Q&A sessions with noted international filmmakers, actors and producers. Special events are scheduled for April 7th at El Museo del Barrio and April 9th at the Bronx Museum of the Arts. Over 40 highly anticipated and influential films from and about Latin America, the Caribbean and Latinos in the U.S. will be screened. A variety of genres and themes from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Guatemala, Cuba, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Mexico, Peru, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, U.S. and Uruguay, ranging from comedy, thrillers, drama, film noir and children’s tales, as well as films and documentaries about the influence of music and dance are all part of this year’s Festival.

On April 16th, HFFNY opens with the New York premiere of the Brazilian film, Veronica, 1 pm at the Quad Cinema, the Festival’s primary screening venue. The Opening Night Ceremony and Screening takes place at the New York Directors Guild Theatre, 110 West 57th Street, at 7 pm with the New York premiere of Los Dioses Rotos, the box office sensation and award-winning film by Cuban director Ernesto Daranas. Actress Silvia Aguila will present the film.

Since its inception, HFFNY has recognized and celebrated some of the most illustrious Latin American filmmakers in the industry. Continuing this tradition, HFFNY 2010 honors renowned Cuban writer, director, poet, actor and dramatist Enrique Pineda Barnet, who has given the public more than 4 decades of unforgettable cinema. HFFNY pays him tribute with screenings of Cosmorama, considered the precursor to the contemporary video art movement, and today is part of the permanent collection at the Centro Reina Sofia de España (Queen Sofia of Spain Center); La Bella de la Alhambra, Best Picture winner of the prestigious Goya award; and La Anunciación, his most recent film about the reunion of state-side Cubans and their families.

As the festival enters its second decade, HFFNY established the Havana Star Prize to recognize the work of outstanding filmmakers in the categories of Best Film, Best Director, and Best Screenplay. The first Havana Star prizes will be awarded at the Closing Night Ceremony on April 23rd at 7 pm at the New York Directors Guild Theatre. Internationally renowned Cuban artist, Yoan Capote, designed the Havana Star Prize especially for HFFNY. The recipients will be chosen by three prominent members of the film industry, producers Michael Hausman (Gangs of New York, Brokeback Mountain, The People vs. Larry Flynt), and Sandy Lieberson (The Rolling Stones’ Rock and Roll Circus, Stardust) and director Louis Perego (President of National Association of Latino Independent Producers (NALIP) NY Chapter, owner of Skyline Features, a bilingual (English and Spanish) multimedia and educational production company.



The Argentinian movie "The Secret in their Eyes" (El Secreto de sus Ojos) that got the Oscar as Best Foreign Language Film opens Friday in New York!

I didn't see it yet, but as an Argentinian I'm very proud that the movie by Juan Jose Campanella opens in a commercial theatre in New York City. It was a huge success in Argentina and I hope it will be successful here too.

You can see a full review in the New York Times.

I found out that will be shown in:

Angelika Film Center New York
18 West Houston Street

I don't know yet about another theaters.

I wrote a previous post about this movie.

Please support Latin American Cinema!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

BOLIVIA- From Argentina

Hello again,

After Passover I'm ready to write again.

Bolivia by Adrian Caetano
Argentina, 1hr. 15 min.

The plight of the immigrant is universal. In this movie set up in "a parrilla" in Buenos Aires we encounter Freddy, a Bolivian who had left his family behind to try his luck in Argentina.

He finds a job in a restaurant cooking "parrillada", an assortment of meats, including the famous Argentinian "chorizo sandwich."

The movie takes place in 2001, the year of a major financial crisis in Argentina. There are many unemployed; some people feel threatened about immigrants taking their jobs. Does it sound familiar?

For many years Bolivians, Paraguayans and Peruvians had come to Argentina to escape poverty in their homelands. Their struggle to make ends meet and send money home it is not an easy one.

Because of financial constraints, Adrian Caetano had to film this movie in three day intervals over a three year period.