South America

Anina (2013)
Alfredo Soderguit
Uruguay
78′
Anina Yatay Salas is a pensive redhead who really does not like her name. Each part is a palindrome, which means it reads the same both forwards and backwards. Her schoolmates are always teasing her about this, especially Anina’s arch-enemy Yisel. When these two get into a playground fight one day they are sent to the school head who disciplines them with a nerve-racking punishment: they are both given a sealed black envelope which they are not allowed to open for an entire week. Haunted by nightmares, the days drag by endlessly for Anina. She and her inquisitive best friend try to devise all sorts of ways to discover what is inside the envelope. Gradually, Anina begins to realise that not only does Yisel share her fate: she also has much bigger problems to contend with than Anina. Tentatively, the two rivals begin to get to know each other. Narrated by the voice of the young protagonist, the film is able to follow Anina’s thought processes and provide an insight into her emotional world. Anina’s day-dreams are not always about her troubles and woes - they also reflect her awakening feelings of love.
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Birdwatchers (2008)
Marco Bechis
Brazil
104′
Birdwatchers (La terra degli uomini rossi) is a film set in Brazil, in the Matto Grosso do Sul. It depicts the breakdown of a community of Guarani-Kaiowa native Indians whilst attempting to reclaim their ancestral land from a local farmer.
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Compañeros - La noche de 12 años (2018)
Álvaro Brechner
Uruguay
117′
1973. Uruguay is governed by a military dictatorship. One autumn night, three Tupamaro prisoners are taken from their jail cells in a secret military operation. The order is precise: "As we can’t kill them, let’s drive them mad." The three men will remain in solitary confinement for twelve years. Among them is Pepe Mujica - later to become president of Uruguay.
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Decent People (2014)
Franco Lolli
Argentina
86′
Gabriel keeps his head above water with odd jobs. When his son Eric moves in with him, the money runs out. So they follow the well-meant invitation of the wealthy Maria to spend the holidays with her family. An encounter full of challenges.
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Ecuador (2012)
Jacques Sarasin
Ecuador
75′
In a world of one-way traffic, where the northern countries are exporting their economic and political model worldwide, one country in Latin America has undertaken a profound reform of these models to invent a new type of governance, both pragmatic and humanistic. The country in question is Ecuador. Rafael Correa, an established economist, who came to politics as a man on a mission, was elected President in 2006. Since coming to power, he has transformed a country with archaic structures into a social, independent, ecological and participative democracy. He has given Ecuadorians genuine reason to believe that the rigid structures of the past were no longer inevitable, that ordinary citizens had their word to say, and that, at long last, their voices would be heard. This film is intended for everyone, from rich and emerging countries alike. It suggests concrete perspectives to a new way of living the phenomenon of globalization. It shows that political, ecological and economic alternatives do exist. This film is not a film about Ecuador; rather, is about a political project, where utopia became reality. It is a film of ideas and reflections, suggesting solutions to the current crises besetting the globe. It proposes a real debate on the future of our society
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El mudo (2013)
Daniel und Diego Vega
Peru
87′
After a short investigation, the police concludes that the shot that almost killed justice commissionner Constantino Zegarra was in fact a stray bullet. But Constantino, convinced that someone wants him out of the way, re-opens the investigation. This soon leads him to exceed his own powers to prove he is right.
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El rey de San Gregorio (2006)
Alfonso Gazitúa Gaete
Chile
80′
“The King of San Gregorio” is a story about a pure and simple love. The film talks about the life of Pedro Vargas – who plays himself – a 30 years-old man living in the slum of San Gregorio and presents a physical handicap and a certain grade of mental disability. Nevertheless, none of these factors will stop him from being the protagonist of this beautiful love story with his “princess” Cati, a girl who has a severe mental disability. As any other romantic drama, there are antagonists who do not approve this love. Pedro’s mother, María is hard to accept that her man-son is in love and she is even willing to prevent the relationship. Besides, the frustrated sister of the female protagonist, Marta, fears the sexual arouse of Cati, interfering in her relation with Pedro. Nevertheless, Pedro struggles for being with his princess, entrusting to God and to the wise advices of Juan, an old man who teaches him how to believe in love. • Pedro Vargas - Chief Character Known as “the King” in San Gregorio hood, Pedro Vargas is a 30 years-old man, who presents a certain grade of physical and mental handicap. Nevertheless, he is a very sensitive, romantic and optimistic person. He strongly wishes to live the intense love he feels for his princess Cati, in a place beyond clouds. Cati, the princess – (María José Parga) She is Pedro’s sweetheart. She is a very beautiful green-eyed girl of a naïve aspect. She is 28, but looks younger since she is especially delicate. She presents a severe handicap, because of a poliomyelitis she underwent when she was 3. Due to this illness, she nearly can’t speak and when she does, she uses very short words. She is always laughing and it seems she is always thinking about another thing. The only thing she wants is to be with Pedro and when her sister forbids it, she cries and has violent attacks of nerves. She has a kind of obsession with the Dorothy, the character of the “Wizard of Oz” • María – (Gloria Münchmeyer) Explosive and melancholic, María - Pedro´s mother and his main antagonist - is a 64 years -old widow who works as a domestic servant. Her strong black eyes are her most outstanding feature. She is very over-protective with Pedro, not only due to his handicap, but also because he is her only child. In this context, María emphatically objects his son´s relationship with Cati. • Marta – (Giselle Demelchiore) Marta is Cati´s sister and the second antagonist in the story. She is 34 and in spite of being very pretty, she looks neglected, dark and sad. Due to the mother desertion, Marta takes care of her sister and it is the reason why she has postponed herself deciding to live alone with no boyfriend. She fears for Cati´s relationship with Pedro and especially for her sister sex life. • Juan – (Andrés Rillón) He is Pedro’s mentor and he is the one who will help Pedro to achieve his goal of being with Cati. He is 73, bald, with a neglected face and he moves in a noisy and old wheelchair. He is hypochondriac and has an ironic sense of humor.
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Familia sumergida (2018)
María Alché
Argentina
91′
Marcela’s world becomes strange and unfamiliar after her sister Rina dies. She feels lost in her own house, and her relationship with her husband and children seems to suffer. But when Nacho, a young friend of her daughter’s, unexpectedly drops by, she starts to talk and walk with him. Gradually Marcela begins to have conversations with relatives from another dimension.
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Herencia (2001)
Paula Hernández
Argentina
92′
Peter travels from Germany to Buenos Aires to find the woman he fell head over heels in love with some time ago and who wants to live with. But he doesn't know much more about her than her name, an address that is no longer true, and the memory of enchanting moments. He meets Olinda, who runs a local restaurant and was herself stranded in Argentina half a century ago in search of her great love.
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Hombre mirando al sudeste (1986)
Eliseo Subiela
Argentina
109′
Man Facing Southeast is a drama-science fiction film fro Argenina, written and directed by Eliseo Subiela. It was selected as the Argentine entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 60th Academy Awards.
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La tierra y la sombra (2015)
Acevedo César Augusto
Colombia
98′
Alfonso is an old farmer who has returned home to tend to his son, who is gravely ill. He rediscovers his old house, where the woman who was once his wife still lives, with his daughter-in-law and grandson. The landscape that awaits him resembles a wasteland. Vast sugar cane plantations surround the house, producing perpetual clouds of ash. 17 years after abandoning them, Alfonso tries to fit back in and save his family.
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Las aventuras de dios (2001)
Eliseo Subiela
Argentina
82′
Cinema is the art of remembrance and Eliseo Subiela is one of the most gifted artists of remembrance in cinema. In this film, which particularly reconnects with his first films, Subiela makes us float between realities, between the inside and the outside, between here and beyond, between love and abandonment. Subiela describes it as a "metaphysical thriller", the story of this man in the company of a woman who both are prisoners in a dreamlike space; they are trapped in an apparent dream taking place in the labyrinthine corridors and strange rooms of a seaside 1930s hotel. The man knows nothing about his past or how he ended up in the hotel, but is accused by two men of having committed a crime at some previous point in his life. Every time he falls asleep, the man is tortured by a recurring nightmare of living in an impoverished apartment with a woman and a baby. Gradually, the man and woman fall in love as they try to figure out what has led to their imprisonment, and together they resort to extreme measures to break out of the dream. Eliseo Subiela invites us on a wonderful journey into philosophical spheres.
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Los silencios (2018)
Beatriz Seigner
Brazil
90′
Nuria, 12, Fabio, 9, and their mother Amparo arrive in a small island in the middle of Amazonia, at the border of Brazil, Colombia and Peru. They ran away from the Colombian armed conflict in which their father disappeared. One day, he reappears in their new house. The family is haunted by this strange secret and discovers the island is peopled with ghosts.
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with bonus
Medianeras (2011)
Gustavo Taretto
Argentina
90′
Bonus:
Mariana, Martìn and the city of Buenos Aires. Martìn and Mariana live across from each other on the same block, but never meet. They pass each other, not knowing about the other’s existence. She goes up the stairs as he goes down the stairs; he gets on the bus just as she gets off the bus. They go to the same video rental shop, but a video rack separates them; they sit in the same row at the cinema, but the auditorium is dark. The city brings them together, and, at the same time, keeps them apart. Director Gustavo Taretto told the story of Mariana, Martìn and the city of Buenos Aires once before: «MEDIANERAS is a short film that received 40 awards worldwide - a short film with a feature film hidden inside. Our aim is to bring the feature to light. In the film EL SOL DEL MEMBRILLO (QUINCE TREE OF THE SUN), Víctor Erice reflects, among other things, upon Antonio López’s obsession with painting a tree that he had planted and seen growing in his garden. The tree changes with the passing of time, the seasons, and especially in different shades of light. MEDIANERAS is my tree. I planted it over four years ago, and I’ve been watching it grow since then. Following the analogy with the painting, the short film unveils the gesture in the stroke, the artist’s palette, the trunk which holds it in place, the main branches and the colour of its leaves. Now, with the feature, the moment has arrived for going into detail, for exploring depth and hues, ambiguities and contradictions. The story changes in exactly the same way as the city that serves as its setting: Buenos Aires. Some of the scenes wither away, while others bloom.» (Gustavo Taretto)
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Neruda (2016)
Pablo Larraín
Chile
108′
An inspector hunts down Nobel Prize-winning Chilean poet, Pablo Neruda, who becomes a fugitive in his home country in the late 1940s for joining the Communist Party.
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Paraiso (2009)
Hector Galvez
Peru
89′
Five teenagers, three boys and two girls, live in a refugee neighborhood south of Lima paradoxically known as Los Jardines del Paraíso, the gardens of paradise. Together with their parents, their share memories of wartime massacres between the army and the Shining Path. Despite their trauma, they yearn to move on with their life. But in an isolated world without opportunities, they have little hope of succeeding.
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with bonus
Que tan lejos (2006)
Tania Hermida
Ecuador
91′
Bonus:
Self-discovery journey of two girls in their mid twenties while they travel along the Ecuadorian mountains and coasts. Esperanza (Hope) and Tristeza (Sadness) will not find postcard views or perfect love, but their journey will teach them there’s a world beyond that.
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Refugiado (2014)
Diego Lerman
Argentina
94′
Matias and his mother Laura, find themselves forced to hurriedly abandon the house they live in to escape another outburst of violence from Fabian. Matias is 8 and Laura is newly pregnant. Thus they begin a wandering journey in search of a place they can feel safe and protected. They embark on an unusual road-movie of everyday life, a drama shot through with great humanity.
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Sonhos de Peixe- Fishdreams (2006)
Kirill Mikhanovsky
Brazil
107′
In a tiny village on the northeastern coast of Brazil, the young fisherman Jusce scrapes out a living by diving 30 meters with rudimentary equipment for lobster. His prize’ at the end of a long day of risky work is sitting close to Ana as she savors the drama of urban sophisticates on her favorite soap opera. Ana dreams of leaving the village to see the world. Jusce is content with the life he leads. Jusce’s old fishing buddy - Rogerio - returns from the big city for holidays. With his Buggy he drives around the dunes and scores Ana’s immediate attention. The day Rogerio gives Jusce a ride to Ana’s marks the beginning of their rivalry for Ana’s attention. Jusce has to reinvent himself in order not to loose Ana to the adventurous life style of Rogerio. Russian-born Kirill Mikhanovsky locates his love story in an impoverished fishing village in Brazil against the background of the harsh daily life of the fishermen. In expert manner the debut-director handles both image and sound, which intertwine provocatively throughout this visually impressive sleeper hit of the Cannes Critics’ Week.
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South (Sur) (1988)
Fernando Solanas
Argentina
122′
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The Milk of Sorrow (2009)
Claudia Llosa
Peru
94′
When her mother dies, Fausta is forced to face her fears, that she got as ababy with the milk of her mother. Fausta now sets out on a journey - a journey that will lead her out of her fear and into freedom. Peruvian director Claudia Llosa’s film addresses a dark era of her country’s history. It won the Golden Bear in Berlin and was nominated for the Oscars in 2010.
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The Voyage (El viaje) (1992)
Fernando Solanas
Argentina
133′
A young man living in a cold southern village in South America, decides to start a trip looking for his father. By doing this he discovers unexpected facts about his Latin American essence.
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Tigre (2017)
Silvina Schnicer
Argentina
92′
A woman visits her home on an island in the Tigre Delta in an attempt to reconnect with her son, but finds that returning and reconciliation are never easy, in this atmospheric family drama from Silvina Schnicer and Ulises Porra Guardiola.
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Un amor (2012)
Paula Hernández
Argentina
100′
Does love at first sight exist? This may certainly be the case, but sometimes you need time to be sure of this love. This film describes such a story about getting to know somebody and falling in love as a teenager, and about meeting again many years later. It begins in the 70s, in the summer in a small town by the river. Bruno and Lalo are teenagers and good friends. They hang around together in the heat, until one rainy day Lisa turns up, a beautiful young woman who capriciously and quick-wittedly turns the heads of both boys - and then decides on one of them. Three decades later she is back again and finds the friends from her youth living in differing situations. "I am single now", she says, but I can't get the picture of the three of us out of my head. No, she is certainly no longer the same Lisa for both men as she was back then. The pictures and memories that one had of one another, are these still any use in the present? What was it like back then, this love? What did we want, what happened to us? They ponder these questions in front of the camera, giving voice to their memories. How does a love story and history fit together? Can you carry on where you left off three decades ago? These and other questions are pondered by this film about making friends and falling in love as a teenager, and of meeting again many years later. The wonderfully easy-going triangle of their adolescence can probably not be revived. But what about unique and true love from back then? Paula Hernández’ film is also an experiment about how feelings are linked to the spirit of the time the ups and downs of life, in which light, air and sun play a not insignificant role. An intensive, thoughtful, atmospherically very emotionally intoned film about love and about time, which gives this love a new dimension.
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