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Thumbs Up ... Cheers for the Cuban cinema

Just a few days have gone by since the last edition of the New Latin American Film Festival came to an end. However, the Cuban sample was strongly followed by those attending the event.


26 de diciembre de 2016 - By Lester Upierre

Just a few days have gone by since the last edition of the New Latin American Film Festival came to an end, where movies from all the American Continent and other latitudes were projected in the movie rooms of the Cuban capital. However, the Cuban sample was strongly followed by those attending the event. What was this all about?

Along the years, I've watched films from different nations, and each of them have a social and authoctonous cultural touch, being worked with the own visuality of their filmmakers. Many of them go far beyond the canons set by the American and Hollywood standard patterns, becoming fully enjoyable options. Meanwhile, others are not so fortunate and finish by reproducing a mere spectacle and mercantilism of this industry.

The positive and valuable thing about the cinema made in Cuba consists in its separation of any pre-established style. Our cinema is not like any other; that's why, every newly released movie, inside or outside the December festival, is so well tracked. After a visual review of almost all our cinema, I think that its highest hallmark is their visual values; in the end, that is what it is all about.

The way the camera turns to be the director's eye, and then, the viewer's, proves we watch differently, critically; though with certain melancholy and love towards what it was recorded. I already said it once: there are social problems everywhere, but probably because the national cinema raises more frequently some issues not addressed by the press, it may be that its scope and label attract more than one.

Enrique Pineda Barnet, Tomas Gutiérrez Alea, Juan Carlos Tabío and Fernando Pérez are just a few examples, out of the so many personalities the most recent filmmakers are nurtured. Furthermore, outstanding figures of the cinema, many to mention in this article, have provoked laughter, tears, astonishment, awe. Another of the indisputable qualities of this  mass media is the director-actor dumbbell, which makes us spend a memorable moment in the darkness of a room.

Naturally, it has been and will always be bad movies within the Cuban cinema, but even these sour parts are valuable, to acquire a general knowledge on this art. I love to watch Cuban films since these have what I'm not able to read, because they show a face I sometimes ignore, because they sound an as authentic Cuba, because they reflect and invite us to reflect. Each one may have his/her favorites within this art, but when I see a Cuban movie I feel as if I'm seeing myself on a mirror -whether clear or broken-, though always myself.


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