For ten days, audiences in Havana enjoyed the stories and characters of the films and documentaries screened at the Havana Film Festival. During these intense days, some felt shock, others anger and yet others empathy. Some suffered and no few had a good laugh. It was a festival for all tastes. When the award-winning films were announced, most spectators already had their own, personal awards list ready.
Movies & Books
The Cuban film “Conducta” Ernesto Daranas was the big winner of the XXXVI International Festival of New Latin American Cinema Sunday with the Coral Award for Best Feature Film at the closing ceremony of the event.
It might seem contradictory that, with so many foreign options we may not get another chance to see, people should opt to go see Cuban films. They are films that are made here and, at one point, they will be screened in the country’s theaters. Despite this, whenever a Cuban film premieres, the line-ups are endless.
In a holiday special, we spend the hour with Isabel Allende, one of Latin America’s and the United States’ greatest novelists. Just this week she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Allende is the author of 20 books, including “The House of the Spirits,” “Paula” and “Daughter of Fortune.” Her latest is a mystery novel titled “Ripper.”
The last month of the year is nearing and, in addition to the shy Cuban winter, people are looking forward to the Havana Film Festival. From December 4 to 14, the streets of Havana will again feel the revelry of a public hungry for the most recent films of our continent and the rest of the world.
“If you want to learn anything about the history of this country, you have to start with Carlos Varela.” This advice, offered by a colleague who was helping me in a Cuban archive a decade ago, proved remarkably true. I arrived in Havana in 2004 to research child migration conflicts.
In the new book, “Back Channel to Cuba: The Hidden History of Negotiations between Washington and Havana,” authors Peter Kornbluh and William LeoGrande use recently declassified documents to expose the secret history of dialogue between the United States and Cuba.
Rebuild the city, make it live, lie, talk to talk: pointing to the future. “Map” was made in the Spring of 2009 by Damian Sainz. (3:19 min.)
John Patrick and Patrick Edward, grandchildren of the famous US writer Ernest Hemingway, received on Monday the status of Honorary Members of the Club International Hemingway of Cuba, during a visit to the island this week.
This Thursday, September 4, Jose Enrique Pardo’s documentary “Cubamerican” will premiere in Miami. The film, includes interviews with renowned Cubans such as ballet star Lorena Feijoo, pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba & actor Andy Garcia.