New Latin American Cinema at Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. March 8-27, 2014. Experience fresh and vibrant new voices from Chile, Costa Rica, Mexico, and Brazil.
Feathers (Por las plumas) by Neto Villalobos (Costa Rica, 2013, 85 min.). All About Feathers is a charming story of friendship, loyalty, and finding your place in the world. Chalo, a security guard, wants to get into the cockfighting game, so he buys, trains, and befriends a rooster named Rocky-but not everyone in Chalo’s life welcomes his new feathered friend. Villalobos employs expertly framed long shots to capture the character’s environment, and draws our attention to their behavioral and physical quirks.
Neto Villalobos studied sociology at the University of Costa Rica and cinema at the Centre d’Estudis Cinematografics de Catalunya in Barcelona. His short films include 100 al aste (2010), El papa de Ernesto (2010), and Jason (2011), which screened at Cannes. All About Feathers is his feature debut.
All About Feathers: Sun, Mar 8, 2:30 pm (RA) $9, $11; Wed, Mar 12, 5:30 pm (RA) $7, $8; Wed, Mar 19, 3:30 pm (AA) $9, $11.
The Summer of Flying Fish (El verano de los peces voladores) by Marcela Said (Chile, 2013, 88 min.). A fog permeates through a dense forest, creating an unsettling atmosphere in this coming-of-age drama. Teenaged Manena and her affluent family vacation at their lake house, and continue to deny they are on indigenous land claimed by the Mapuche. Said’s images make the rising tension between Manena’s family and the Mapuche palpable as the tribe becomes more outspoken against her family’s ignorant beliefs.
Marcela Said obtained a degree in aesthetics from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. In 1997, she went to France to study film and media at Paris-Sorbonne University. Already an accomplished documentarian, Said won a berth in the prestigious Directors’ Fortnight at Cannes for her first feature film, The Summer of Flying Fish.
The Summer of Flying Fish: Wed, Mar 12, 7:30 pm (RA) $9, $11; Fri, Mar 14, 5 pm (AA) $9, $11; Sat, Mar 15, 10:30 am (AA) $7, $8; Wed, Mar 19, 5:30 pm (AA) $9, $11; Thu, Mar 20, 3 pm (RA) $7, $8; Fri, Mar 21, 3 pm (RA) $7, $8; Sun, Mar 23, 10:30 am (RA) $7, $8.
Workers by José Luis Valle (Mexico, 2013, 120 min.). After a wealthy old woman dies, she leaves her vast fortune to her beloved dog, while her loyal housekeepers and gardeners receive nothing. Rafael, an illiterate man working in a light bulb factory, is unable to receive his pension because of his immigration status. These are a few of the characters in Valle’s brilliant portrait of Tijuana, Mexico. Valle captures the vast discrepancies in social status with long takes that makes us feel the weight of their reality.
Born in El Salvador, José Luis Valle is a Mexican citizen who has written a children’s book and made short films. His documentary El milagro del Papa (2009) screened at Locarno Film Festival. Workers is his debut feature film.
Workers: Fri, Mar 14, 7 pm (AA) $9, $11; Wed, Mar 26, 7:30 pm (RA) $9, $11; Thu, Mar 27, 5 pm (RA) $9, $11.
Heli by Amat Escalante (Mexico, 2013, 105 min.). Escalante brings a reality of his country into sharp focus in this unflinching portrait of police corruption and drug violence. As romance blooms between a young girl and a police trainee, drugs are suddenly found at her home, and the entire family pays with a heavy physical and psychological price.
Born in Barcelona, Amat Escalante spent most of his early years in Guanajuato, Mexico. He studied film editing and sound at the Center for Cinematographic Studies of Catalonia. Heli was selected to compete for the Palme d’Or at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival, and, controversially, was awarded Best Director by a jury headed by Steven Spielberg.
Heli: Sat, Mar 15, 12:30 pm (AA) $9, $11; Wed, Mar 19, 7:30 pm (AA) $9, $11.
Wolf at the Door by Fernando Coimbra (Brazil, 2013, 101 min.). Described by Coimbra as a modern-day variation on Medea, the film follows a mother and father as they search for their abducted daughter. Blaming each other for her disappearance, the couple reveals their history through flashbacks, and they are forced to reveal deep secrets about their past. And soon, like the characters themselves, we start to wonder if they are being entirely truthful. “An utterly compelling and indelible drama” (The Hollywood Reporter).
Fernando Coimbra was born in Ribeirão Preto, Brazil, and studied filmmaking at the University of São Paulo. He worked as an actor, dramatist, and video director for Teatro Oficina theatre. He has written and directed nine short films. A Wolf at the Door is Coimbra’s first feature film.
Wolf at the Door: Sat, Mar 15, 3 pm (AA) $9, $11; Thu, Mar 20, 5 pm (RA) $9, $11.
TICKET & VENUE INFORMATION
Tickets may be purchased at www.mfa.org/film, by calling the MFA Ticketing Line at 800.440.6975, or in person at any MFA ticket desk. Where two prices are listed, the first is discounted for members, seniors, and students; the second is full price.