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Lessons for Zafirah

(Lecciones para Zafirah)
Mexico, 2011

Directors: Carolina Rivas, Daoud Sarhandi Producer: Daoud Sarhandi Screenplay: Carolina Rivas Cinematographer: Daoud Sarhandi Editor: Daoud Sarhandi Music: Daoud Sarhandi, Andrés López, Hector Berioz

Created as a cinematographic diary for Zafirah, the directors’ three-year-old daughter, this documentary is a poignant testimony about the era of human migration in which we live. It records the faces and stories of the people who congregate around the train, which represents the symbolic vehicle of escape for the thousands who travel through Mexico to the United States each year. And, it captures the participation of people who voluntarily provide assistance to the migrants. With a critical and joyful touch, the directors paint a bleak, but also a universal, portrait of human greatness.

We believe that cinema stimulates change not only through “denunciation” but also through confrontation and by fomenting emotions that illuminate new and constructive thoughts. Carolina Rivas & Daoud Sarhandi

Creado como un diario cinematográfico para su hija de tres años, llamada Zafirah, el documental retrata hechos, rostros y gestos humanos que se dan cita en torno al tren La Bestia –que representa el vehículo simbólico de escape para miles de migrantes que viajan hacia Estados Unidos. A través de testimonios, captura la participación de personas en México que voluntariamente ofrecen ayuda a los migrantes. Con un aliento crítico y gozoso, los directores muestran un retrato desolador, pero también maravilloso de la grandeza humana.

3:00 pm|The Cinematheque (CIN)
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Carolina Rivas’s first short film, Zona cero, was selected for the Cinéfondation section of Cannes and her first documentary, El color de los olivos, screened at over 80 festivals. Daoud Sarhandi has worked as a film editor for Channel 4 and the BBC. Lecciones para Zafirah has been selected at a number of international film festivals and won Best Film at FICUNAM in Mexico.