A reemergence of Latin American films on the international scene in recent years has resulted in a wealth of vivid, groundbreaking work. The Walker Art Center’s Cinemateca film series continues its run of screenings on the last Friday of each month with two documentaries on Friday, May 30, 7:30 pm, including Isabel Vega and Amanda Micheli’s La Corona (The Crown) from Colombia, about a beauty pageant at a women’s prison in Bogotà, and Carlos Bosch’s Septembers (Septiembres) from Spain, which documents a singing competition at a prison in Madrid.
The contestants in this beauty pageant are thieves, murderers, and guerillas. The runner-up wipes her tears with a tattooed hand when the tiara is not placed on her head—and after the winner is crowned queen, all are taken back to their cells. Set in the women’s penitentiary in Bogotá, Colombia, The Crown is a character-driven documentary that follows four inmates competing in the annual pageant. Nominated for an Oscar in the Short Documentary category and winner of Honorable Mention Award at 2008 Sundance film festival. 2007, Colombia, video, in Spanish with English subtitles, 45 minutes.
In Septembers, eight men and women reveal their lives though the love songs they perform in a competition held in a prison near Madrid. The inmates from such various countries as Argentina, Mexico, Bolivia, and Lithuania pine for their family, friends and lovers and director Carlos Bosch (of the Oscar-nominated Balseros), tracks down the loved ones outside the penitentiary walls who have inspired the songs. 2007, Spain, video, in Spanish with English subtitles, 90 minutes.
Tickets to La Corona (The Crown) and Septembers (Septiembres) are $8 ($6 Walker members) and are available at walkerart.org/tickets or by calling 612.375.7600. The screening takes place in the Walker Cinema.
The Cinemateca series continues on Friday, June 27, with XXY from Argentina, which won the Ariel Award for Best Ibero American Film.