To accompany the steamy heat of mid August in New York City, the Film Society of Lincoln Center is offering the 13th edition of its Latinbeat series, presenting a variety of the best recent Latin American cinema made in the past year. Drawing heavily from the film festival circuit, most of the films already come with a pedigree that continues to make the region an incredible wealth of fiction and documentary cinema. There will be lots of music–from Uruguay, Brazil and Chile–and, as always, the exciting presence of filmmakers, producers and actors at screenings. A special panel has been convened to explore the on-going renaissance of the New Mexican Cinema.
Eight countries are represented in the series which begins on Friday August 17 with Mexican black comedy EXPIRATION DATE by Kenya Marquez. Closing out the series on August 23 is 3 MILLION, an inspiring sports documentary about the Uruguyan soccer team’s journey to South Africa to compete for the World Cup. Two music films are especially anticipated. SONGS by the 79 year old Brazilian documentarian Eduardo Coutinho includes segments from 18 ordinary people in Rio de Janeiro who are asked to name and sing their favorite Brazilian song. The film makes plain the importance of music in the emotional lives of the hot-blooded Brazilian peoples.
Premiering at the Sundance Film Festival, where it won a top prize in the World Cinema section, VIOLETA WENT TO HEAVEN by Chilean director Andres Wood combines fiction and documentary in the story of the singer/songwriter/visual artist Violeta Parra, who was a pioneer of Chile’s folk music movement known as Nueva Cancion. The film explores Parra’s troubled life which ended with her suicide at age 50. The film was the official Oscar submission from Chile this past year. In CHINESE TAKEAWAY, Argentine superstar Ricardo Darin stars as a rather hardened store owner who opens himself up emotionally to help an undocumented Chinese immigrant. For a complete schedule and to buy tickets online, visit: http://www.filmlinc.com/films/series/latinbeat-2012