The Undocumented on PBS/KQED, Independent Lens

Though the immigration debate focuses on the living, most seem to forget those that don’t make it across and end up dying in the desert. The Undocumented by Marco Williams looks at the migrant that doesn’t make it.

Border Patrol agents, Native Americans, smugglers, ranchers, retirees and samaritans form a constellation of people engaged with the Arizona/Mexico border on a daily basis — policing it, inhabiting it, crossing it, working it, making it safer or simply feeling its consequences. But at the center of it all is the migrant.

Airs in the San Francisco Bay Area as of April 29, 2013.

Shenandoah, Documentary Screening & Conversation April 29

Shenandoah, a coal-mining town with a proud immigrant past, once fueled America’s industrial revolution. Today, it is a town in decline, and the descendants of yesterday’s European immigrants rub shoulders with the Mexican immigrants of today. Tensions came to a head when four white football players were charged in the beating death of Luis Ramirez, an undocumented Mexican migrant. In the documentary “Shenandoah,” Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer turned director David Turnley creates a deeply felt portrait of a working-class community torn apart by violence. 97 minutes. English.

“It was a tragedy that touched upon several great national themes — the dislocation wrought by fading industry, the turmoil of immigration, the endurance of sports…” — Sam Dolnick, The New York Times

Director David Turnley will hold a question-and-answer session after the film.

Free advance tickets for this event. Free tickets will also be available at the door on a first-come, first-served basis.

Monday, April 29, 6:30 pm

UC Berkeley Campus – 145 Dwinelle Hall

@SFLucho

Blancanieves, Snow White with Spanish Panache

Blancanieves is a twist on the Snow White fairy tale. This time it is set in 1920s Seville (Spain) and centered on a female bullfighter. This film   won multiple Goya Awards (Spain’s highest film award) and was Spain’s submission for the Oscar’s. Pablo Berger directs and it stars Maribel Verdu (Pan’s Labyrinth, Y Tu Mama Tambien), Daniel Gimenez Cacho (Y Tu Mama Tambien, Bad Education) , and Angela Molina (Live Flesh, Broken Embraces).

It’s an excellent film that will certainly delight.

The film is screening at the Embarcadero Center Cinemas in San Francisco starting April 19th.

Filly Brown- Opens Nationally – April 19

Filly_Brown_One_Sheet

Filly Brown opens on April 19 nationally. Check listings for times at a theater near you. You may recall this was our opening night film at the last edition of the Cine+Mas SF Latino Film Festival back in September.

Congratulations to the cast and crew including directors Youssef Delara and Michael D. Olmos.  The film stars Gina Rodriguez, Lou Diamond-Phillips, Edward James Olmos, and Jenni Rivera.
Maria Jose ‘Majo’ Tonorio is a tough LA street poet who spits from the heart. After meeting a talented DJ she cuts her first demo under the guidance of a small time hustler more interested in promoting Majo’s sexuality than her lyrics. Soon a major label and its strong-arm executive come calling. Convinced that a record deal will deliver much needed money for the family, Majo is suddenly faced with some stark choices. Does she accept the deal and turn her back on the friends who got her to the precipice of success or does she let a golden opportunity slip away. Nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance 2012.

Get your Almodovar Fix at the Castro April 11

Part of what makes the Castro Theater such a treasure is the programming. This month for example there were three days of a sing-a-long screening of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast then drag performer Miss Coco Peru  the next day followed by Django Unchained. I’m happy to see that in that eclectic mix of films and performances that classic films, Oscar winners, film festivals and foreign films all have a grand film palace for people to see them as they’re meant to be seen: on the big screen.

PedroAlmodovar_2011_cannesFFThis month they’ll be screening a couple of Pedro Almodóvar films. You can catch All About My Mother at 4:55PM & 9:10PM and Talk To Her at 2:45 and 7PM, Thursday April 11th.

Talk to Her: 2002 Spain  Comedy/Drama
Two men share an odd friendship while they care for their girlfriends who are both in deep comas.

All About My Mother: France/Spain 1999  Comedy/Drama
Young Esteban want to become a writer and also to discover the identity of his father, carefully concealed by the mother Manuela. Won an Academy Award for Best Foreign Film.  Stars Marisa Paredes, Cecilia Roth, Penélope Cruz, Antonia San Juan


@SFLucho

 

Latin American Films at 56th SF International Film Festival

There are several Iberian and Latin American films in this year’s San Francisco International Film Festival which runs from April 25-May 9th.  With screenings, panels, parties, and awards, the festival offers up a wide array of activities for the casual to the die-hard cinephile. 

Some of the Iberian and Latin American titles include:

The Artist and The Model from Spain by Fernando Trueba. An agin painter and his wife discover a beautiful, waiflike young woman wandering the streets whom they take in as his model in this story by 1994 Oscar winner Fernando Trueba (Belle Epoque) about artists and their muses.

The Cleaner from Peru by Adrián Saba. As a mysterious epidemic kill Lima’s adult population- but spares its children- a solitary middle-aged forensic worker discovers an orphaned boy at one of his cleanup sites. When he takes in the traumatized boy, it eases his own isolation and a subtle transformation takes hold of both of them. 

Crystal Fairy from Chile by Sebastian Silva. From the director of The Maid (Sundance Jury Prize winner in 2009), an American in Chile joins up with three lanky brothers and a spaced out hippie chick to seek out the perfect high of a desert psychedelic in this partially improvised road movie. Stars Michael Cera.

After Lucia from Mexico by Michel Franco. After this wife’s death in a car accident, Roberto moves to Mexico City with his teenage daughter Alejandra. While they are close, their repressed grief and lack of communication threatens to unhinge them when Ale becomes the victim of a brutal bullying at school.

La Sirga a co-production from Colombia/France/Mexico by William Vega  A shy teenage girl, cast out of her home by a fire which also destroyed her parents, seeks shelter with a handful of denizens of the shores of a lagoon in this coming-of-age tale set in the lonely, enchanted landscapes of the high Andes where everyone quietly nurtures illusions of success and fantasies of intimacy with other humans.

Habi, The Foreigner from Argentina/Brazil by María Florecia Alvarez. In a film that explores what it means to feel like an outsider and examines the role of culture in self-definition, this is a coming-of-age story that traces 20-year-old woman’s spontaneous attempt to create a new identity for herself as a Lebanese orphan in Buenos Aires. North American Premiere. 

Il Futuro  from Argentina Through their relationship with a pair of bodybuilders, an orphaned brother and sister stumble on an opportunity they can’t refuse: seemingly easy money by way of a former Mr. Universe turned reclusive movie star. This is more than crime drame. It’s a meditation on time, aging, identity and the movies. An adaptation of Roberto Bolaño’s novella.  

They’ll Come Back from Brazil by Marcelo Lordello A potent exploration of class and adolescence, Cris is a privileged teen, who after being left on the side of the road as punishment for bickering with her brother, embarks on a journey that will open her eyes to a world she never knew as she tries to find her way home.

Mai Morire from Mexico by Enrique Rivero. In the ethereal, nearly pre-Columbian landscapes of the Mexican town of Xochimilco, a stoic woman returns home to care for her 99-year-old mother nearing the end of her life. Haunting and meditative. The film shows the experience of  her mother’s death as a beautiful, natural event. 

Visit Festival.SFFS.org for more detailed information about the festival and these particular films.

@SFLucho

Eva Mendes’ Latest Film

Place Beyond the Pines is the latest film by Derek Cianfrance starring Ryan Gosling (as Luke), Bradley Cooper (as Avery), and Eva Mendes (as Romina).  The film centers on the two men’s tragic encounter- Cooper as a rookie cop and Gosling as a bad-boy biker who upon learning that he has a baby tries to make good as a provider but chooses crime as the path.

The Place Beyond the PinesEva Mendes plays a working mother with a man that cares for her, her mother and her baby. Her brief romantic liaison with Luke and his immediate departure, left her alone and with a baby. She never told him about the boy.


The story takes some twists and looks at the long term impact of choices made by parents in their own lives and children.

The film opens today.