Today we are sharing two films that address memory from different viewpoints, composing narratives that weave the relationship between memory, silence and what is forgotten. Cabros de mierda, Gonzalo Justiniano's tenth film, builds upon collective memory and the search for justice during the Military Dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet. Meanwhile, in the short film I’m Still Here by Tana Gilbert, memory is intertwined with loss, old age and the passage of time. We invite you to watch these two moving films that are available streaming for one week in this new edition of Thursdays of Chilean Cinema.
Since the '80s, Gonzalo Justiniano has been characterized by creating a filmography that sculpt portraits of Chilean roots, through feature films such as Caluga o menta , Amnesia and B-Happy, classics of our national cinema. These films were awarded at various international festivals and positioned Justiniano as an essential director of his generation.
In 2019 he released his most recent film, Cabros de Mierda, with a story about a North American missionary who resides in La Victoria, a poor neighborhood in Santiago during the Pinochet dictatorship. The film premiered internationally at the Rome Film Festival and was applauded globally.
In an interview with CinemaChile in 2017, Justiniano told us about his inspiration for making his most recent movie. “It started from looking at myself in the mirror and asking myself who I am and what things have happened to me, as well as from an invitation that the Museum of Memory made me, where they made me watch material that I had filmed 30 years ago. I thought that in a country where so many people live afraid of memory, it was important to tell what happened, what was felt and what was lived to invite other people to join in, to complete the different points of view and to put together what was a time in my life and country ”.
After its premiere, Cabros de Mierda has had a long international journey, winning along the way the Special Jury Prize at the Political Film Festival (FICIP) in Argentina and the CCAS Award, des électriciens gazie in the 2018 version of the Toulouse Festival. At the Ceará Festival she received the award for Best Actress for Natalia Aragonese and Best Art Director, given to Carlos Garrido.
I'm still here
In I’m Still Here, Tana Gilbert gives us an intimate look at Johnny (56) and Julia (87), two people who only have each other to lean on. Despite his unstable mental health from suffering from schizophrenia, he lovingly cares for his mother, who is dealing with the loss of her memories. With an insightful and lucid gaze, Gilbert explores this unconditional relationship, the effects of Alzheimer's, love and dependency.
The work also brings us closer to the problem of mental health in Chile and proposes a new perspective on "being" with another on a physical, mental and emotional level. The short was produced by Alba Gaviraghi and had its international premiere in 2017 at the prestigious Canadian documentary festival, Hot Docs. It was also selected for the Camden Festival and SANFIC13.
In 2017, in an interview with Radio Bíobio, Gilbert commented that the short film sought to “portray a story of unconditionality of a mother and a son, both affected by a mental illness, which is born in the first instance by my personal experience. The link that I had since I was little with mental illness was represented by Johnny, he is my uncle and Julia my grandmother. Since I was a child I saw my grandmother take care of and take care of Johnny, who has suffered from schizophrenia since he was 18 years old when he lived a traumatic experience in the military service that caused his first crisis ”.
Click here to see Carbos de Mierda