The release of Chilean filmmaker Patricio Guzman's La Cordillera de los Sueños (Cordillera of Dreams) prompts FQ columnist Manuel Betancourt to reflect upon the reflexive turn in recent nonfiction documentaries from Latin America. Betancourt suggests that Guzmán pioneered the wave of documentary filmmakers in the region whose work marries first-person address with political urgency. Broadening his focus to include Petra Costa and Tatiana Huezo, whose films The Edge of Democracy and Tempestad explore the political collateral damage in Brazil and the violence against women in Mexico respectively, Betancourt argues that these filmmakers' embrace of self-reflexive strategies places them at the forefront of a vital nonfiction tradition that puts personal narratives front and center.
Cineando: Patricio Guzmán's La cordillera de los sueños and the Power of First Person Nonfiction Filmmaking in Latin America
Manuel Betancourt is a film critic and a cultural writer. He is the film columnist at Electric Literature and a regular contributor to Remezcla. His academic work on queer film fandom has appeared in Genre and GLQ, while his cultural criticism has been featured in Film Comment, The Atlantic, NPR, Pacific Standard, and the Los Angeles Review of Books, among others. He is one of the writers of the Eisner Awardnominated graphic novel The Cardboard Kingdom (Knopf, 2018) and the author of Judy at Carnegie Hall (Bloomsbury, 2020), a 33 1/3 book on the 1961 Grammy award-winning double album. www.mbetancourt.com
Manuel Betancourt; Cineando: Patricio Guzmán's La cordillera de los sueños and the Power of First Person Nonfiction Filmmaking in Latin America. Film Quarterly 1 June 2020; 73 (4): 61–64. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/fq.2020.73.4.61
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