The Spanish Film Club proudly presents the Spring 2018 film line-up, which will be screened on Wednesdays at 6pm in the Klarman Auditorium. These events are free and open to the public.
February 7 / IXCANUL, VOLCANO (Ixcanul, volcán)
Jayro Bustamante / France, Guatemala / 92 min / 2015 / In Maya and Spanish with English subtitles
Maria, a 17-year-old Mayan girl, lives and works with her parents on a coffee plantation in the foothills of an active volcano in Guatemala. An arranged marriage awaits her: her parents have promised her to Ignacio, the plantation overseer. But Maria doesn’t sit back and accept her destiny. Pepe, a young coffee cutter who plans to migrate to the USA becomes her possible way out. Maria seduces Pepe in order to run away with him, but after promises and clandestine meetings, Pepe takes off, leaving her pregnant, alone and in disgrace. There’s no time to lose for Maria’s mother, who thinks abortion is the only solution.
February 14 / ETERNAL AMAZON (Amazônia eterna)
Belisario Franca / Brazil / 88 min / 2013 / Portuguese with English subtitles
The Amazon is a vast laboratory for sustainable experiments that are unveiling new rela-tionships among human beings, corporations, and this natural heritage that is crucial for life on the planet. This is where the guidelines are being drawn up for a new global economic model: the green economy. With astonishing cinematography and soundtrack, Eternal Amazon presents a critical analysis of how the world’s largest tropical rainforest is understood and utilized. Exploring the Amazon’s five million square kilometers–home to 20% of the world’s freshwater reserves–the film asks whether it is possible for humans to make sustainable use of the rainforest, featuring nine successful projects for sustainable forest use that directly benefits the local population and fosters good economic partnerships. Activities such as agriculture, fisheries, animal husbandry and extraction are unraveled under the support of experts, including economist Sergio Besserman, ecologists Bertha Becker and Virgilio Viana, as well as testimony of Amazonians. It portrays the daily lives of the forest people as the guardians of this great natural heritage that could last into eternity, if properly managed.
February 21 / SEALED CARGO (Carga sellada)
Julia Vargas Weise / Bolivia, France, Mexico, Venezuela / 107 min / 2015 / Spanish with English subtitles
With a promotion in the offing and his beautiful wife Nena at his side, things couldn’t be better for ambitious policeman Hector Mariscal. Before he can enjoy the good life, though, a final, top-secret assignment must be carried out: to transport-by rail-a highly toxic cargo across Bolivia’s high desert backcountry and “dispose” of it in a remote indigenous village. With kindly engineer Klinger guiding his beloved steam locomotive Federica, and presented with a crew of hapless cops and an unexpected young stowaway, Mariscal finds that there’s much more on the line than he imagined in this sharp, energetic satire. Bolivia’s official entry for Best Foreign Language Film at this year’s Academy Awards®, Julia Vargas-Weise’s third feature is a lively rejoinder to that country’s status as a dumping ground for the world’s industrial waste. Rich in symbolism and in spirit, Sealed Cargo is a terrific ride through the seldom-seen Altiplano and a potent reminder of what really matters. Based on the real events that took place in 1994 when 400 tons of toxic waste were transported through Bolivia, Sealed Cargo delivers a crucial and current message about the global waste crisis that highlights its relevance.
February 28 / FROM THE LAND TO YOUR TABLE (¿Qué culpa tiene el tomate?)
Alejo Hoijman, Marcos Loayza, Josué Méndez, Carolina Navas, Paola Vieira, Alejandra Szeplaki, Jorge Coira / Argentina, Bolivia, Peru, Colombia, Brazil, Venezuela, Spain / 107 min / 2011 / Spanish, Portuguese, Galician, Aymara with English Subtitles
What do you get when you take seven directors from seven different countries with seven different cultures and points of view? From the Land to Your Table is the first documentary of its kind in that it shows the perspectives of seven majorly talented filmmakers and directors from all over Latin America as they capture the conditions and cultural diversity of popular produce markets in their individual countries.
March 7 / THE FACILITATOR (El facilitador)
Victor Arregui / Ecuador, Chile, USA / 83 min / 2014 / Spanish with English subtitles
When Miguel, a successful businessman finds out about his illness, he asks his estranged daughter Elena to come back to Ecuador. She complies, but keeps a cold and distant relationship with him, opting for spending most of her time with friends, between drugs and alcohol. After a close call with the law, Miguel sends her to spend some time with her grandfather at the family’s estate. In this nostalgic house that brings up so many memories and nightmares, Elena meets her childhood friend Galo, who now promotes water access rights for the indigenous community. She is compelled by their way of life and gets involved with the political organization of the community. When the nightmares intensify, Elena starts digging behind the reports of the car accident that supposedly killed her mother. She will gradually understand that among family secrets, crimes, corruption, and dark perversions, commitment and beauty can emerge. A political thriller about human rights, The Facilitator is one of the most successful films to come out of Ecuador in the last few years.
The Spanish Film Club Spring Series is hosted by the Department of Romance Studies, in collaboration with the Society for the Humanities and the Department of Performing and Media Arts, and made possible with the support of Pragda, The Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports of Spain, and SPAIN arts & culture.