Tucson Cine Mexico, a partnership between the University of Arizona Hanson Film Institute and New York-based Cinema Tropical and the longest-running festival of Mexican cinema in the United States, has announced the 2018 festival program to take place March 21 - 25. Celebrating its 15th anniversary in 2018, Tucson Cine Mexico will screen seven films with four of the featured filmmakers in attendance.
Highlights of this year's lineup include the U.S. premiere of the Mexican box office hit Me gusta pero me asusta / I Like it, but it Scares Me, and celebrating the centennial of the birth of El Santo, a screening of the brand new digital restoration of the first film to star the legendary luchador, Santo contra cerebro del mal / Santo vs. The Evil Brain.
Direct from its World Premiere at the Berlin Film Festival, the digital restoration of Santo contra cerebro del mal will screen on March 22 at the Fox Tucson Theatre. Filmmaker/archivist, and granddaughter of the film’s producer Jorge Garcia Besné, Viviana Garcia Besné will be on hand at the post-screening Q&A to discuss her journey to restore the film. She packed the disintegrating reels into a refrigerated van and drove them to Los Angeles, where she enlisted various entities, including The Academy Film Archive, to save them from oblivion.
In honor of the Santo centennial, doors will open 45 minutes prior to the screening for a pre-show birthday cake and a special set of music and video mixed live by DJ Dirtyverbs and visualist Adam Cooper-Terán of Verbo•bala.
Screening on Saturday March 23 at 4:00pm at Harkins Tucson Spectrum 18, Me gusta pero me asusta will feature a post-screening Q&A with the film’s director, Beto Gómez. The romantic comedy—the second highest-grossing Mexican film of 2017—stars Alejandro Speitzer and Minnie West in their big-screen debut.
Other titles, all of them in their Arizona premiere, include Cristina Herrera Bórquez's Etiqueta no rigurosa / No Dress Code Required, Natalia Beristáin's Los adioses / The Eternal Feminine, Natalia Almada's Everything Else / Todo lo demás, Diego Ros's El vigilante / The Nightguard, and Tatiana Huezo's Tempestad.
With a focus on presenting the best of the latest films from Mexico, co-directors Vicky Westover and Carlos Gutiérrez have programmed a lineup that reflects the masterful quality of films currently being produced in Mexico.
“Mexican cinema is currently going through a second golden era,” says Carlos Gutiérrez. “The country broke all-time production records with 175 films made last year, and it’s not only a matter of quantity, but also about quality. Mexican cinema has reached a peak of maturity and artistry, represented by a diversity of voices. Beyond the historic wins of the Three Amigos at the Oscars, there’s a vast wealth of film talent currently active in the country. We’re thrilled to serve as an important international showcase for Mexico’s who’s who in film, which we’ve done since launching Tucson Cine Mexico 15 editions ago.”
Vicky Westover added: "One of the greatest joys in putting together Tucson Cine Mexico is the large and highly diverse audience we continue to draw. We are grateful to our sponsors whose generosity makes it possible for us to offer the festival to the community for free."
Tucson Cine Mexico 2018 is made possible by Film Tucson, Topline Entertainment, Rio Nuevo, Arizona Office of Film & Digital Media, La Estrella Bakery, UA College of Fine Arts, UA Department of Spanish & Portuguese, UA Office of Global Initiatives, SplitSeed Productions, Vantage West, Calle Tepa Mexican Street Grill, Guadalajara Original Grill, and with the support from Tucson Museum of Art and Historic Block, UA Institute for LGBT Studies, UA Center for Latin American Studies, UA College of Humanities, UA College of Social & Behavioral Sciences, UA Department of Gender & Women’s Studies, and Ambulante Gira de Documentales
This year’s festival will run from March 21 – 25 at the Harkins Tucson Spectrum 18, the Fox Theatre, the Center for Creative Photography and the Tucson Museum of Art & Historic Block, and as always, all of Tucson Cine Mexico events are free.