October 16 - 18, 2009
BAMcinématek

 

In the past few years Uruguay has developed a group of young filmmakers who have shed light on recent political and social changes in the country. Despite winning key prizes in the most renowned film festivals (Cannes, Berlin, Rotterdam, AFI), many of the films by this young generation of Uruguayan directors have largely been off the radar. This series offers a rare opportunity for New York audiences to discover the revitalized cinema of Uruguay.

Uruguay continues to make its modest yet vigorous presence in Latin American cinema providing a stable location for local film production. Last year the country produced a record-breaking number of sixteen feature films. Uruguayan influences can also be seen in its neighboring Argentinean cinema within the work of director Israel Adrián Caetano, [(Pizza, Beer and Smokes (1998); Bolivia (2001); and Chronicle of an Escape (2006)], and the actor Daniel Hendler who is perhaps best known to international audiences for his work with director Daniel Burman [The Lost Embrace (2004), Family Law (2006)].

A key force in the revitalization of Uruguayan cinema has been producer/editor Fernando Epstein who, through his acclaimed production company Control Z Films (co-founded directors Pablo Stoll and the late Juan Pablo Rebella), has established creative and alternative modes of production—often in coproduction with other countries—fostering the development of local talent and artistic creation. Epstein will be in attendance during ¡Go Uruguay! program.

Co-programmed by Carlos A. Gutiérrez. 

 

Supported, in part, by the Embassy of the United States in Montevideo, Uruguay. The series is made also possible in part with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts and from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs.

Special thanks to Nahir Lois, Robert Zimmerman, Embassy of the United States of America in Montevideo, Uruguay; Consul General Adriana Lissidini, Karla Enseñat, Consulate General of Uruguay in New York; Martin Papich, Mariana Rizzo, Instituto de Cine y Audiovisual del Uruguay; Santhosh Daniel, Chris Wiggum, Global Film Initiative; Rebeca Conget, Cambria Matlow, Claire Weingarten, Film Movement; Clemence Taillandier, Zeitgeist Films; Sandro Fiorin, Alex Garcia, Cristina Garza, FiGa Films; Sergio Gándara, Patricia Méndez, Parox; Alan Shapiro.

All films are in Spanish with English subtitles. All prints are 35mm unless noted.

 

All screenings at BAMcinematek at BAM Rose Cinemas
30 Lafayette Avenue, Brooklyn, NY
(718) 636-4100 / www.bam.org

 


 

GIGANTE (Adrián Biniez, Uruguay/Argentina, (2009), 85 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. New York Premiere) With Horacio Camandule, Leonor Svarcas, Diego Artucio Q&A with director Adrián Biniez and producer Fernando Epstein "Impeccable…[with] inherent charm." — The Hollywood Reporter Winner of the Grand Jury Prize Silver Bear, the Alfred Bauer Prize and the Best First Feature Award at the 2009 Berlin Film Festival, Biniez's promising debut feature film Gigante tells the story of Jara, a shy and lonely 35-year-old security guard at a supermarket on the outskirts of Montevideo. He works the night shift, monitoring the surveillance cameras of the entire building. One night Jara discovers Julia, a 25-year-old cleaning woman, through one of the cameras and is immediately attracted to her. Night after night, he watches her on the cameras while she works. Soon he starts following her after work: to the cinema, the beach and even to a date with another man. Jara's life becomes a series of routines and rituals around Julia, but eventually he finds himself at a crossroad and must decide whether to give up his obsession or confront it. Print courtesy of Film Movement. Friday, October 16, 7pm

GIGANTE
(Adrián Biniez, Uruguay/Argentina, (2009), 85 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. New York Premiere)
With Horacio Camandule, Leonor Svarcas, Diego Artucio
Q&A with director Adrián Biniez and producer Fernando Epstein

"Impeccable…[with] inherent charm." — The Hollywood Reporter

Winner of the Grand Jury Prize Silver Bear, the Alfred Bauer Prize and the Best First Feature Award at the 2009 Berlin Film Festival, Biniez's promising debut feature film Gigante tells the story of Jara, a shy and lonely 35-year-old security guard at a supermarket on the outskirts of Montevideo. He works the night shift, monitoring the surveillance cameras of the entire building. One night Jara discovers Julia, a 25-year-old cleaning woman, through one of the cameras and is immediately attracted to her. Night after night, he watches her on the cameras while she works. Soon he starts following her after work: to the cinema, the beach and even to a date with another man. Jara's life becomes a series of routines and rituals around Julia, but eventually he finds himself at a crossroad and must decide whether to give up his obsession or confront it.
Print courtesy of Film Movement.

Friday, October 16, 7pm

25 WATTS (Juan Pablo Rebella and Pablo Stoll, Uruguay, 2001, 94min. In Spanish with English subtitles) With Daniel Hendler, Jorge Temponi, Alfonso Tort. Q&A with producer Fernando Epstein "Wins you over with its good nature ands its charm."— IndieWire A surprise hit at the 2001 Rotterdam Film Festival, 25 Watts marked the auspicious debut for the Uruguayan duo Pablo Stoll and the late Juan Pablo Rebella that consolidated Uruguay's participation in the recent revitalization of Latin American cinema and launched a prolific and exciting period for young Uruguayan directors. A wry, fresh, and funny Montevideo slacker comedy, 25 Watts portrays the monotonous lives of Leche, Javi, and Seba who wander around the neighborhood with nothing to do but drink beer, smoke, talk about girls, and interact with picturesque characters from the barrio. Saturday, October 17, 4:30pm

25 WATTS
(Juan Pablo Rebella and Pablo Stoll, Uruguay, 2001, 94min. In Spanish with English subtitles)
With Daniel Hendler, Jorge Temponi, Alfonso Tort.
Q&A with producer Fernando Epstein

"Wins you over with its good nature ands its charm."— IndieWire

A surprise hit at the 2001 Rotterdam Film Festival, 25 Watts marked the auspicious debut for the Uruguayan duo Pablo Stoll and the late Juan Pablo Rebella that consolidated Uruguay's participation in the recent revitalization of Latin American cinema and launched a prolific and exciting period for young Uruguayan directors. A wry, fresh, and funny Montevideo slacker comedy, 25 Watts portrays the monotonous lives of Leche, Javi, and Seba who wander around the neighborhood with nothing to do but drink beer, smoke, talk about girls, and interact with picturesque characters from the barrio.

Saturday, October 17, 4:30pm

THE DOG POUND / LA PERRERA (Manuel Nieto Zas, Uruguay/Argentina/Spain/Canada, 2006, 108min. In Spanish with English subtitles. New York Premiere) With Pablo Riera, Martín Adjemian, Sergio Gorfain. Screening introduced by producer Fernando Epstein "Humorous chronicle of a year of trouble and sexual misery, achieves an odd mixture of triviality in its apparent purpose, of stylistic elegance and radical pessimism." — Liberation Desperate and unfortunate, lazy and hesitant, David, a 25-year-old, has failed as a student and lost the scholarship that financially supported him in the capital city. Now he must pass an exam that will take place in a year if he wants this grant to continue. In order prepare, David has come to live at La Pedrera, a small beach town where his father has given him the mission of building a house during the winter. This is the story of the construction as well as David's tragicomic fight to survive in a world where there are as many dogs as men and few women and where no one wants to work. Nieto Zas' debut feature film was named "Best Uruguayan Film of 2006" by the Association of Film Critics of Uruguay. Saturday, October 17, 6:50pm

THE DOG POUND / LA PERRERA
(Manuel Nieto Zas, Uruguay/Argentina/Spain/Canada, 2006, 108min. In Spanish with English subtitles. New York Premiere)
With Pablo Riera, Martín Adjemian, Sergio Gorfain.
Screening introduced by producer Fernando Epstein

"Humorous chronicle of a year of trouble and sexual misery, achieves an odd mixture of triviality in its apparent purpose, of stylistic elegance and radical pessimism." — Liberation

Desperate and unfortunate, lazy and hesitant, David, a 25-year-old, has failed as a student and lost the scholarship that financially supported him in the capital city. Now he must pass an exam that will take place in a year if he wants this grant to continue. In order prepare, David has come to live at La Pedrera, a small beach town where his father has given him the mission of building a house during the winter. This is the story of the construction as well as David's tragicomic fight to survive in a world where there are as many dogs as men and few women and where no one wants to work. Nieto Zas' debut feature film was named "Best Uruguayan Film of 2006" by the Association of Film Critics of Uruguay.

Saturday, October 17, 6:50pm

THE POPE'S TOILET / EL BAÑO DEL PAPA (César Charlone, Enrique Fernández,  Uruguay/France/Brazil, 2007, 97min. In Spanish with English subtitles) With César Troncoso and Virginia Melo, "Towers supreme!…alternately heartbreaking and hilarious." —Village Voice It's 1988, and Melo, an Uruguayan town on the Brazilian border, awaits the visit of Pope John Paul II. 50,000 people are expected to attend, and the most humble locals believe that selling food and drink to the multitude will make them rich. Petty smuggler Beto thinks he has the best idea of all –he decides to build a WC in front of his house and charge for its use. His efforts bring about unexpected consequences, and the final results will surprise everyone. El baño del Papa is a touching, humorous and poignant story from director-scriptwriters Enrique Fernández and noted cinematographer César Charlone who was Oscar-nominated for City of God. Saturday, October 17, 9:15pm

THE POPE'S TOILET / EL BAÑO DEL PAPA
(César Charlone, Enrique Fernández,  Uruguay/France/Brazil, 2007, 97min. In Spanish with English subtitles)
With César Troncoso and Virginia Melo,

"Towers supreme!…alternately heartbreaking and hilarious." —Village Voice

It's 1988, and Melo, an Uruguayan town on the Brazilian border, awaits the visit of Pope John Paul II. 50,000 people are expected to attend, and the most humble locals believe that selling food and drink to the multitude will make them rich. Petty smuggler Beto thinks he has the best idea of all –he decides to build a WC in front of his house and charge for its use. His efforts bring about unexpected consequences, and the final results will surprise everyone. El baño del Papa is a touching, humorous and poignant story from director-scriptwriters Enrique Fernández and noted cinematographer César Charlone who was Oscar-nominated for City of God.

Saturday, October 17, 9:15pm

STRANDED: I'VE COME FROM A PLANE THAT CRASHED ON THE MOUNTAINS / VENGO DE UN AVIÓN QUE CAYÓ EN LAS MONTAÑAS (Gonzalo Arijón, France/Uruguay, 2008, 126 min. In Spanish with English subtitles) "Superb (...) a cinematic tour de force. One of the great tales of human survival (...) packs a knock-out punch." —Variety It is one of the most astonishing and inspiring survival tales of all time. On October 13, 1972, a young rugby team from Montevideo, Uruguay, boarded a plane for a match in Chile—and then vanished into thin air. Two days before Christmas, 16 of the 45 passengers miraculously resurfaced. They had managed to survive for 72 days after their plane crashed on a remote Andean glacier. Thirty-five years later, the survivors return to the crash site—known as the Valley of Tears—to recount their harrowing story of defiant endurance and indestructible friendship. Previously documented in the 1973 worldwide bestseller Alive (and the 1993 Ethan Hawke movie of the same name), Stranded is a visually breathtaking and crafted film that includes riveting detail by documentary filmmaker (and childhood friend of the survivors) Gonzalo Arijón with a masterful combination of on-location interviews, archival footage, and reenactments. Sunday, October 18, 4pm

STRANDED: I'VE COME FROM A PLANE THAT CRASHED ON THE MOUNTAINS / VENGO DE UN AVIÓN QUE CAYÓ EN LAS MONTAÑAS
(Gonzalo Arijón, France/Uruguay, 2008, 126 min. In Spanish with English subtitles)

"Superb (...) a cinematic tour de force. One of the great tales of human survival (...) packs a knock-out punch." —Variety

It is one of the most astonishing and inspiring survival tales of all time. On October 13, 1972, a young rugby team from Montevideo, Uruguay, boarded a plane for a match in Chile—and then vanished into thin air. Two days before Christmas, 16 of the 45 passengers miraculously resurfaced. They had managed to survive for 72 days after their plane crashed on a remote Andean glacier. Thirty-five years later, the survivors return to the crash site—known as the Valley of Tears—to recount their harrowing story of defiant endurance and indestructible friendship. Previously documented in the 1973 worldwide bestseller Alive (and the 1993 Ethan Hawke movie of the same name), Stranded is a visually breathtaking and crafted film that includes riveting detail by documentary filmmaker (and childhood friend of the survivors) Gonzalo Arijón with a masterful combination of on-location interviews, archival footage, and reenactments.

Sunday, October 18, 4pm

WHISKY (Juan Pablo Rebella and Pablo Stoll, Uruguay/Argentina/Germany/Spain, 2004, 94min. In Spanish with English subtitles) With Andrés Pazos, Mirella Pascual, Jorge Bolani "Delicious. A slightly absurd comedy about intimacy and solitude. Funny and gently narrated, Whisky marveled the audience with the confidence of its melancholic humor." — Los Angeles Times Jacobo is the dull and gravely serious owner of a sock factory. Every day, he follows the same routine—he gets up, drives to the factory, and meets his manager Marta, a frumpy, quiet, middle-aged worker who is loyal to the factory and her boss. Their dull routine is broken by the impending arrival of Jacobo's younger brother, Herman, who lives in Brazil. Jacob then allows himself to ask Marta for help to cope with the situation. Hence, between absurdity and melancholy, as well as daily life and farce, the movie subtly portrays the clumsiness of these characters, so different from one another, while they try to hide their resentment and friction. Whisky—Rebella and Stoll's remarkable follow-up feature to 25 Watts which screens at BAM on Saturday—was awarded with numerous prizes including the International Critics' Award at Cannes Film Festival. Whisky is presented with the Global Film Initiative.  Sunday, October 18, 6:15pm

WHISKY
(Juan Pablo Rebella and Pablo Stoll, Uruguay/Argentina/Germany/Spain, 2004, 94min. In Spanish with English subtitles)
With Andrés Pazos, Mirella Pascual, Jorge Bolani

"Delicious. A slightly absurd comedy about intimacy and solitude. Funny and gently narrated, Whisky marveled the audience with the confidence of its melancholic humor." — Los Angeles Times

Jacobo is the dull and gravely serious owner of a sock factory. Every day, he follows the same routine—he gets up, drives to the factory, and meets his manager Marta, a frumpy, quiet, middle-aged worker who is loyal to the factory and her boss. Their dull routine is broken by the impending arrival of Jacobo's younger brother, Herman, who lives in Brazil. Jacob then allows himself to ask Marta for help to cope with the situation. Hence, between absurdity and melancholy, as well as daily life and farce, the movie subtly portrays the clumsiness of these characters, so different from one another, while they try to hide their resentment and friction. Whisky—Rebella and Stoll's remarkable follow-up feature to 25 Watts which screens at BAM on Saturday—was awarded with numerous prizes including the International Critics' Award at Cannes Film Festival.
Whisky is presented with the Global Film Initiative. 

Sunday, October 18, 6:15pm

KILL THEM ALL / MATAR A TODOS (Esteban Schroeder, Uruguay/Argentina/Chile, 2007, 97min. In Spanish with English subtitles) With Roxanna Blanco, Claudio Arreondo, Jorge Bolani "Roxana Blanco gives a robust performance" — The New York Post When democracy starts to spread across a weakened Latin American dictatorship, a man flees through the forest of a Uruguayan seaside resort. He is from Chile and hides at a police station of the town. He desperately announces that he has been kidnapped, that someone wanted to kill him. The charges reach Judge Santacruz, who asks his assistant, lawyer Julia Gudari, to help with the investigation. She finds that the police have tried to erase all traces of the case and that the Embassy of Chile is no help either. Julia also discovers that this Chilean citizen is a biochemical engineer who worked secretly for Pinochet. As Matar a todos continues, a dark story begins to unravel which involves her directly—both her father, General Gudari, and her brother, Ivan, are part of the alliance and will do everything they can to keep Julia away from the truth. Sunday, October 18, 9:15pm

KILL THEM ALL / MATAR A TODOS
(Esteban Schroeder, Uruguay/Argentina/Chile, 2007, 97min. In Spanish with English subtitles)
With Roxanna Blanco, Claudio Arreondo, Jorge Bolani

"Roxana Blanco gives a robust performance" — The New York Post

When democracy starts to spread across a weakened Latin American dictatorship, a man flees through the forest of a Uruguayan seaside resort. He is from Chile and hides at a police station of the town. He desperately announces that he has been kidnapped, that someone wanted to kill him. The charges reach Judge Santacruz, who asks his assistant, lawyer Julia Gudari, to help with the investigation. She finds that the police have tried to erase all traces of the case and that the Embassy of Chile is no help either. Julia also discovers that this Chilean citizen is a biochemical engineer who worked secretly for Pinochet. As Matar a todos continues, a dark story begins to unravel which involves her directly—both her father, General Gudari, and her brother, Ivan, are part of the alliance and will do everything they can to keep Julia away from the truth.

Sunday, October 18, 9:15pm