June 14, 2021

Cinema from Belgium, France and Brazil arrives in Guatemala in a memory sample

The eleventh edition of the Memory Truth Justice international film exhibition returns to Guatemala next week with German, French, Belgian, Brazilian and Guatemalan films, the event’s organizing committee said on Wednesday.

The exhibition, founded and promoted by the German filmmaker Uli Stelzner, will premiere in Guatemala the winning film of the Golden Camera at Cannes 2019 and nominated as the representative of Belgium before the Oscar 2020 awards, Our Mothers, on March 19.

Starring the Mexican Armando Espitia, Our Mothers relates a Guatemala that lives “at the rhythm of the trial of the military that originated the civil war and how the testimonies of the victims are linked to build memory,” the organization said in a statement.

Our Mothers, directed by the Guatemalan filmmaker César Díaz, is the introduction to an exhibition that will culminate on March 25 after presenting a dozen films under the theme of “burning” of human rights “in these troubled times”.

There will also be the Brazilian Espero tua (re) volta, by Eliza Capai; the French Sangre Verde, by directors Anne Michel, Jules Giraudat and Micael Pereira; the German The Red Line, by Karin de Miguel Wessendorf; and the Peruvian Genre under attack, by Jerónimo Centurión.

The promoter of the Memory Truth Justice exhibition, the German Uli Stelzner assured that since 2010 the sample has been “growing every year and to date we estimate that 100,000 people have participated in the city and the interior of the country, with the traveling sample that we started four years”.

He argued at a press conference that it is not a “traditional, common and current” festival, as it is not “competitive”, but rather has “thematic approaches to human rights, such as migration, territory and natural resources”.

Stelzner maintained that every year an interdisciplinary group meets to prepare the sample, with “great enthusiasm, passion and dedication to offer the public a program to get out of the routine, of boredom, with the aim of building a fairer country.”

After each performance presented at the National Theater (the inauguration), the Cultural Center of Spain (in the capital of the country) or at alternate venues, the film exhibition becomes a stage for debate and dialogue with various actors.

“More than 50 panelists from various countries, including film directors, activists, business journalists of all ideological colors, have put forward ideas to create a bridge between the universal and the local,” stressed the German filmmaker, author of documentaries like Los German civilizers in Guatemala or Testimony, on the Guatemalan revolutionary Alfonso Bauer.

“We present a cinema that opens a space for public debate, with cinematographic works about Guatemala that normally do not reach the cinema screens in Guatemala or on television channels. We present a cinema that promotes human rights in its broadest sense. It opens a debate to the world and to deepen and promote critical thinking, “he added.

The film show, entitled “Rights burn, humans burn” this time, has no state funding and has historically been held with the support of embassies, foundations, non-governmental organizations, non-monetary sponsorships and donations from the public, he concluded. Stelzner.


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