During the weeks leading up to the historic national plebiscite that will be held on October 25th, the first in our country in democracy, the Thursdays of Chilean Cinema program has been focusing on contemporary portraits of the political, outlining the various ways in which cinema is a place to come together, inciting dialogue and transformation. When it comes to generating conversation and critical thinking through film, there are two directors that are in a league of their own: the pioneering and provocative duo Bettina Perut and Iván Osnovikoff, who are featured in this week's retrospective.
Film after film, Perut + Osnovikoff deliver a radical look at a different cinematic universe, questioning the moral guidelines of our society. This vision prompts us to take an in-depth look at two of his films, radically different in form but similar in subject matter: The Death of Pinochet (2011) and Clever Monkey Pinochet (2004). In these films, the filmmakers guide us on a journey that helps us understand Chile, one filled with contradictions, horror and inequality, creating snapshots that capture the surreal experience of living in a neoliberal country.
In a key scene in The Death of Pinochet, we see a man shouting at the camera "The figure of my General Pinochet is going to be immensely great and Pinochetism will triumph again in Chile!" At another moment we see the Plaza Italia de Santiago filled with people, who are gathered to celebrate or collectively make sense of the passing away of the dictator. The lips of a man exclaim: “He died without being executed! That is injustice and Chilean society is going to pay for it, sooner or later ”. The exploration of these two divisions of Chilean society are a constant contrast in the film, one that is crucial to the current moment, as we are weeks away from deciding whether to continue with the Constitution written during Pinochet’s Dictatorship in 1980. Screened in BAFICI, Warsaw and São Paulo, the film asks audiences if a death could be really the closing of a chapter in the history of Chile, or one that has yet to be concluded.
This thematic contingency leads us to look at another film by the same filmmakers, El astuto mono de Pinochet (2004), which uses staging techniques and re-enactments to address the Coup d'état. Here, young people give life to the history of Chile, or at least how they have perceived it since their early age. By delving into the historic subjectivities of new generations, the film talks about how the past can turn into a fable, into multiple truths, a living being in constant mutation. Premiering in FIDOCS, its originality and daring vision quickly made it a cult film.
Perut + Osnovikoff's cinema marks a before and after in the history of Chilean documentaries and for 20 years it has been influencing a new generation of authors and dedicated “fans” that follow their filmography. Watch their two featured films s of this retrospective by clicking on the links below.
>>In both cases, depending on the language, you must select the option "RENT" and use the key "cinemachile" as the "Promo Code"<<