The red carpet rolled out last night for the Opening Night of the Colombian Film Festival, running at the Tribeca Cinemas till March 30th. In an effort to boost film production in Colombia, major tax-breaks (around 40%) are being offered to filmmakers who agree to hire production crew and rentals in the country itself and it’s paying off. The fest is presenting feature films, documentaries, and two shorts programs (one for FREE at Instituto Cervantes). Call me biased but every trailer below gave me chills, made me think and was a feast for my eyes. There are indigenous tribes, estranged fathers, vallenato music and My Mother’s Tits. We’re just as excited as you are! Check out our picks below.
Director: Andrea Said
Friday, March 28 at 4:00 PM Buy Tickets
Saturday, March 29 at 5:00 PM Buy Tickets
Andrea Said was born in London but lived her entire life in Colombia. Born to a Colombian mother, Leonor Camargo and Shahid Said from Pakistan, Andrea’s journey takes her to across the pond for the first time determined to find the father she never knew. If the intersection of cultures isn’t interesting enough, the music, montages of old family photos, and Andrea Said’s honest narration will undoubtedly move you.
Director: Maria Gamboa
Cast: Carlos Hernandez, Felipe Botero, Samuel Lazcano, Miriam “Pesca” Gutierrez
Wednesday, March 26 at 8:20 PM Buy Tickets
Sunday, March 30 at 9:10 PM Buy Tickets
Mateo supports his mother by collecting dirty money from his uncle. Living alongside Magdalena River, one of the poorest and most violent neighborhoods in the region, Mateo begins to infiltrate a local theatre group who may or may not have political ulterior motives. Once inside, Mateo becomes fascinated by the free flowing, artistic lifestyle of the actors and is torn between family and his freedom.
Chasing Fireflies (Cazando Luciernagas)
Director: Roberto Flores Prieto
Cast: Marlon Moreno, Estefania Munoz
Thursday, March 27 at 8:10 PM Buy Tickets
Sunday, March 30 at 7:30 PM Buy Tickets
Played by Colombian playboy and screen star, Marlon Moreno, Manrique lives a solitary life working in an abandoned salt mine; his only companion is a dog that goes after fireflies all night. Manrique is disconnected from a world he claims to care nothing about until the appearance of his long lost teenage daughter (whoa!), changes his perceptions. With a beautiful score and top notch cinematography Chasing Fireflies is a beautiful story of love, family and the small things in life.
My Mother’s Tits (Las tetas de mi madre)
Director: Carlos Zapata
Cast: Santiago Heins, Billy Heins, Paula Correa, Alejandro Aguilar
Sunday, March 30 at 6:55 PM Buy Tickets
I’m not gonna lie, this trailer kind of disturbed me. Martin, a 10 year old pizza delivery boy, goes on a run one night to a whorehouse. Stumbling on a peephole, Martin sees a woman do a striptease. Once the veil is lifted Martin’s perception of his mother changes. Las tetas de mi madre explores loss of innocence and the relationships between a single mother and her son, with the added backdrop of dynamic barrio-realness.
The Eternal Night of Twelve Moons (La Eterna Noche de Las Doce Lunas)
Director: Priscilla Padilla
Friday, March 28 at 6:50 PM Buy Tickets
Sunday, March 30 at 1:00 PM Buy Tickets
Indigenous tribes make up about 20% of Colombia’s current population and the Wayuu tribe is one still thriving in Northern Colombia and Northwest Venezuela. In this community, tradition says that once a woman has her first menstruation, she is to be isolated from all men for 12 moon cycles. During that time, we see our protagonist Filia learning to weave (the Wayuu are famous for their mochilas which can now be seen in Upper West Side store-fronts, no joke) cook, and gain other skills for her future.
The Accordion’s Voyage (El Viaje del Acordéon)
Directors: Rey Sagbini & Andrew Tucker
Thursday, March 27 at 4:00 PM Buy Tickets
Saturday, March 29 at 3:00PM Buy Tickets
Legend has it, the accordion was first sent from Germany to Buenos Aires, but got lost along the way. Fast forward to present day and virtuoso Manuel Vega and his group have been trying for years to win the world’s most important vallenato music festival, Le Leyenda del Vallenato in Valledupar. Instead, Manuel gets an invitation to perform with the Hohner Accordion Orchestra in Germany. Go figure! This documentary takes us back to the origins of an instrument that is ingrained in Colombian history and culture.