Ale is a transvestite who lives in a marginalized community of gay and trans people in Buenos Aires who are facing eviction. One evening while collecting cardboard on the street, Ale finds Mia’s diary, hastily discarded by her grieving husband. Reading about her life, Ale is transported to another world and decides she must return the diary to Mia’s ten-year-old daughter. Thus begins this deeply moving drama that reveals a profoundly human desire to care for others in spite of all odds.
Leonardo, a successful industrial designer, lives with his family in an architectural wonder, a mid-century modern Le Corbusier home. One morning, he wakes to the noise of a sledgehammer and is appalled to discover that workers next door are constructing a large window that faces directly into his house. The free-spirited neighbour, Victor, is very friendly, yet obstinate at the same time as he refuses to bend to Leonardo’s demands.
In a small town in Córdoba, Argentina, three childhood friends, Malena, Pablo, and Tomás, rock out on a makeshift stage to a roomful of screaming, enthusiastic fans. However, the chemistry that fires their music has a depth and perplexity to it that none of them is quite ready to face. In the next few hours, the friends will part and a new day will begin, but the angst-laden emotion of teenage desire is not so predictable nor so easily contained.
In 1965, the Argentine conceptual artist León Ferrari created a figure of Jesus Christ crucified on the wings of a US fighter jet, entitled “Western Christian Civilization,” as a symbolic protest against the Vietnam War. The piece marked a turning point in the Argentine art scene, and Ferrari’s work became associated with a radical criticism of certain Western ideologies.
The high art world of Buenos Aires receives a biting, yet humorous take down in this satire. The story revolves around Jorge Ramírez, a nurse who works at a retirement home. After observing one of the residents compulsively drawing, he decides to steal the sketches and submit them to the art gallery as his own to see if they are worth anything. Before Jorge can say ‘art brut,’ he becomes the hottest artist on the scene. As he is catapulted to the top of the international art world, he must navigate through a throng of doting curators, collectors, and critics.
Artist Nicolás Rubió begins a painting of his childhood home in France, but he cannot remember its exact dimensions. Fleeing the brutality of the Spanish Civil War, his family found refuge in this tiny village. Now from his studio in Buenos Aires, Nicolás is desperate to evoke and record his memories of that time. This visually breathtaking documentary, beyond merely being a fascinating depiction of a painter and his subject, is a profound exploration into the essence of the creative process itself.
In fear of an eventual invasion by those infected by violence, the neighbours of Villas de La esperanza arm themselves and share night patrols, risking their lives for the safety of their families. But battling violence with violence only spreads the contagion, and the neighbours will realize that the greatest danger is not what lurks outside their secure, gated community; the real danger lies within. In Guatemala violence is contagious, and we are all infected. The inauguration of Casa Comal in 2006 represented an important step forward for the film community in Central America.
In this lighthearted and nostalgic tale, Valdemar and Benjamin are the fabulous father/son clown duo of Puro Sangue (Thoroughbred) and Pangaré (Mangy Horse). They make their living travelling the Brazilian countryside with the Circo esperança (Hope Circus). They have no fixed address. Benjamin begins to grow tired of the road and worries he is no longer funny. With only his birth certificate in hand, he embarks on a journey of self-discovery to claim a life he has for so long only dreamed of knowing.
Heartfelt and generous in spirit. Sergio Barreto, Chicagoano
Breaking all box office records in Brazil, Tropa de elite 2 is the sequel to the highly successful Tropa de elite (2007), though it is by no means necessary to have seen the first film to be gripped by this hard-hitting, realistic portrayal of corruption and violence in Rio de Janeiro. This time round, Padilha tackles the touchy subject of the militias created to protect Rio de Janeiro’s favelas. Constituted mainly of former cops and military men with shady ties to local politicians and judges, these militias tend to escalate the drug-related violence instead of mitigating it.
Los últimos cristeros is a visually powerful, yet intimate exploration of a lesser known aspect of Mexican history—the dramatic war between Church and State in the 1920s and 1930s. It follows the valiant story of a small band of men who refuse to accept amnesty and instead, continue their fight against religious persecution and the prohibition of their right to practice their Catholic faith in public.