Latino Cinema

March 22, 2010

Diego Congrains

In the reading An Esthetic of Hunger, Glauber Rocha analyzes a culture (countries in development) versus a civilized culture (industrialized market). The countries with an extended industrial culture, such as the members in the European Community, are free to express their opinion, and their films can focus on their artistic expression rather than their own political issues. Latin America is oppressed in its own unknown cultural identity and lacks expression in their films. Rocha said that in Latin America, there exists a conditional liberty, which is the freedom to choose the new colonizers after the independence from Spain, Portugal, France and England. Therefore, there is a hunger to express the art in Latin America. In the culture of the film there is also a starvation of expression. In addition Rocha mentions a new form of expression that is able to feed the hunger.  This is the knowledge of our origins before the colonist and Latin Americans built the ground of a new independent civilized culture. Cinema Novo (New Cinema) can bring those possibilities to the reality of Latin America “The age or the background of the filmmaker is not important.” What is important are the services to search for a non-colonial identity. Cinema Novo depends on our freedom to exist and our voice to yell against the new colonizer.

In Towards a Third Cinema by Fernando Solana and Octavio Getino, the authors explain how Latin America needs a revolution. The art of filmmaking is a revolution. The reason that films exist is that Latin America is no longer a European Colony.  This allows the introduction of revolutionary films that are creative in terms of sources, realities, culture and new ideas to preserve freedom. The authors are against the Classical Hollywood system, which is a symbol of monopoly and new oppression in the film industry. Revolutionary filmmakers are outcasts of the American film system because there is no commercial purpose to produce a film.  An absolute expression of reality is the goal. Hollywood is the devil capitalist system that tries to persuade a community with weak political ideas and a sub-developed in art, psychology, medicine, film and among other subjects. The third cinema is the revolution.  It is a new expression itself that struggles with the Yankee imperialism (Hollywood), the new culture colonizer. Furthermore the emphasis in this reading is that countries with a huge film industry at this time of massive “communication tend to complete the destruction of national awareness and an of a collective subjectivity … a destruction which begin as soon as the child has access to these media” (p. 38) A dominant culture in Latin America through the mass media is an eminent destruction to the future generation, which will become influenced by foreign films.

There is a new colonization by the foreign media in Latin America. This is something necessarily not true. The audience in Latin America likes Hollywood films because they are big productions that are full of effects.  Any other type of films that is mainly subject to special effect only, regardless of where the film is produced, will get accepted by the audience. There are no national films in Latin America.  Filmmakers did not set the parameters of the ideas to convey particular ideas to create an identity for films.

In Imperfect Cinema by Julio Espinosa, there is a focus in the Latino boom in films, especially in Cuba and Brazil. He addressed a complex problem, which is a true artist needs to prepared to face the risk or any problem that is against his/her artistic expression. In other words, the problem is how much of the artistic expression is in his/her art work, and how much is just a premeditated copy from the mirror of society. According to Espinosa, “They can even, in a reverse operation, reject their interest in finding tranquility, harmony, a certain compensation in the work of art, expressing instead disequilibrium” (74) Also Espinosa divides the problem in three aspects: First, the amazing development of science in society.  Let’s understand natural phenomenon, such as light, that is dispensable to draw an image on a film to create a shot. Second, the acceptance of a new development in science into the general use in the hands of the masses, the reading identify as technology that takes a regular person from being a spectator to a creator. Third, a potential revolution in which artists applies new ideas to change the traditional setting in art.

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