24 Jun Ibero-American documentaries are back to town!

by Marcos Gabarri

It has already been one month since our last edition… Unbelievable! We are still processing all the information received from IV IberoDocs and the 71st Edinburgh International Film Festival is already here! Among the screenings this year EIFF features a very interesting selection of Ibero-American documentaries. Colombia, Spain, and Portugal will be on Edinburgh’s red carpet as an example of how Ibero-American culture is valued within the Scottish society. It is worth to have a look at them!

Amazona
82 mins | Colombia | Thu 29th Jun & Sat 1st Jul at 15:30 | Odeon Cinema 4

This is the story of Val and Clare: a mother and daughter. After the tragic death of her eldest child, Val left her family behind and escaped into the Colombian jungle. Thirty years later, when Clare becomes pregnant, she decides to confront her mother, heal the wounds of the past, and try to define motherhood on her own terms. Together they go on an intimate journey exploring the boundaries between responsibility and freedom, with all the guilt and sacrifice they entail.

Correspondences
145 mins | Portugal | Sun 25th Jun & Sun 2nd Jul at 20:45 | Cineworld Cinema 12

Correspondences was inspired by the letters exchanged between two leading Portuguese poets, Sophia de Mello Breyner Andresen and Jorge de Sena, during the exile of the latter (1957-78). He was forced to leave Portugal due to political circumstances and would never return to his home country. The correspondence between the two poets is a testimony to their quest for freedom during a period when Portugal’s fascist regime was under increasing pressure. But their letters also offer an insight into the profound affinity between two human beings.

Delicate Balance
86 mins | Spain | Sat 24th & Mon 26th Jul at 20:50 | Cineworld Cinema 11

A Japanese salaryman in Tokyo, a sub-Saharan community trying to cross the borders into Europe, a family evicted from their own home in Spain. Three stories intertwined on three different continents. This film is a reflection on the path that the human race is taking, on its habits and its relationship with the world. It is a proposal for change,reflected by these specific stories to the general humankind. We will take this journey with the words of José Mujica, former President of the Oriental Republic of Uruguay.

Donkeyote
85 mins | Spain, UK, Germany | Sat 24th Jul at 20:40 | Cineworld Cinema 5

Spanish-born Chico Pereira constructs a contemplative study of his uncle whose wonderful spirit of adventure belies all of his 73 years. Manolo likes to wander the countryside with his donkey and dog by his side, but what happens when, against all advice, he decides to tackle one last, mighty trek? Fascinated by the space between documentary and fiction, Pereira constructs the bones of a narrative around which Manolo’s story unfolds, but as the journey progresses, family bonds reignite, providing a means of catharsis for both men.

When We Were Wild
61 mins | Spain | Mon 26th Jun & Sat 1st Jul at 18:30 | Odeon Cinema 4

When We Were Wild is an imagined conversation between the author and the neighbourhood of San Cristóbal, in the outskirts of Madrid. It is a constant game between form and essence, which confronts the narrator’s prejudice with the spectator’s emotions. It is a liberating and evoking tour that progressively abandons a classic documentary structure to become a first-person essay.

This documentary will be shown along with ‘Americano’, a short film, following the story of Emanuel Xavier, a former homeless teen now fighting discrimination against the Latin and LGBTIQ communities in the USA through poetry and spoken word.

If 2017 seems to be a year to remember for Ibero-American documentary lovers, 2018 will be even better thanks to V Ibero-American Documentary Film Festival of Scotland. We really cannot wait for it! Thank goodness 71st EIFF is here to satisfy our hunger!