Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 11th 2014 Contents B29
May 11, 2014 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
Nairobi Half Life, a 2012 crime
drama that was Kenya s first entry
for an Academy Award, had Ger-
man producers and organisational
It's one of several films at T&T's
European Film Festival, which begins
May 14 at MovieTowne in Port-of-
Spain, that highlight the increasingly
diverse and multinational nature of
"More and more co-productions
are being made between Europe and
other countries, such as countries
in Asia, Africa and Latin America,"
said spokesman Jonathan Ali at the
festival launch last week at the
French ambassador's residence.
"So a lot of what is defined as
European film is not traditional
European film," said Ali. "It's good
that we're showing some of those
films, to show that European film is
more than just red wine and
The festival is also screening
Trishna, a 2011 adaptation of the
classic novel Tess of the D'Urbervilles
by British director Michael Winter-
bottom. Shot in India, it stars Indian
actress Freida Selena Pinto. Pinto
starred in another British/Indian
hybrid, Slumdog Millionaire.
Also to be shown is Nelson Man-
dela: In the Name of Freedom, a
2010 documentary about the South
African icon by French filmmaker
Seven of the festival films were
presented at the launch under three
categories, with Nairobi Half Life
and Trishna put in the category
"Made in Europe? Movies that defy
the traditional definition of a Euro-
The other categories were The
Past: Movies that grapple with
Europe's chequered history" and
Auteurs: Movies made by filmmakers
with a distinctive vision.
It was notable that many were
directed by or focused on women.
The 2012 German film Hannah
Arendt, directed by Margarethe Von
Trotta---part of "the past" catego-
ry---tells the tale of the philosopher/
writer and her controversial New
Yorker articles about ex-Nazi officer
Adolf Eichmann during his 1961 trial.
The 2008 French film 35 Shots of
Rum, directed by Claire Denis, is a
working-class tale about a father
and his adult daughter who share
an apartment in Rue de la Guade-
loupe, Paris. Denis is an auteur who
was born in France but grew up in
West Africa and makes films that
often deal with African issues.
"More and more women film-
makers are making films of course,
and more and more films are being
made about the changing face of
Europe in terms of its population
make up," said Ali.
This year's will be the 18th edition
of the festival, which is organised
by the European Delegation and the
diplomatic missions from France,
Germany, the Netherlands, Spain
and the UK. The European Film Fes-
tival will be organised in partnership
with the T&T Film Festival, as it was
Besides being ethnically and
nationally diverse, the films showcase
a wide variety of styles.
The Illusionist, directed by French-
man Sylvain Chomet, is an almost
dialogue-free animation about a
struggling magician in the 1950s.
Blancanieves, by Spanish director
Pablo Berger, is a black and white
silent film update of Snow White
set in the 1920s.
The films, 26 in all, will be shown
from May 14--27 at MovieTowne,
Port-of-Spain, and May 21--27 at
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BB AC B
Almost everyone loves a good
love story, so it is not surprising
that many followers of the late great
Colombian Nobel Laureate Gabriel
Garcia Márquez consider his best
book to be Love in the Time of
Cholera. What is shocking, how-
ever, is that this is the only one of
Márquez s novels to be turned into
Márquez had once vowed that
none of his novels would be filmed.
His reason: characters lose some of
their magic when people are forced
to reconcile themselves with the
image captured on film.
In this case, that reconciliation
wasn't a difficult pill to swallow,
because the movie starred American
actor Benjamin Bratt as Dr Juvenal
Urbino and Spanish actor Javier Bar-
dem as Florentino Ariza, the ultimate
romantic soul who dedicates his life
to Fermina Daza, the woman who
rejected him for the wealthy, pres-
tigious doctor whom she marries.
Florentino's romanticism prevails
over his despondency and propels
him forward in life. We expect Flo-
rentino and his romantic notions to
survive even when many people are
dying from a cholera epidemic. This
is a love that cannot be destroyed
emotionally so it surely can't be
destroyed physically, which makes
perfect sense in magical realism.
At last, the good doctor dies 50
years, nine months, and four days
after Florentino first confessed his
love to Fermina. This time, he will
not take no for an answer.
Márquez received rave reviews for
Love in the Time of
Cholera. Renowned American nov-
elist Thomas Pynchon wrote, "Sup-
pose, then, it were possible, not only
to swear love forever,' but actually
to follow through on it: to put one's
allotted stake of precious time where
one's heart is? This is the extraor-
dinary premise of Gabriel García
Márquez's... Love in the Time of
Cholera, one on which he delivers,
In his review, The Heart's Eternal
Vow, Pynchon said Márquez
writes "with impassioned control,
out of a maniacal serenity: the Gar-
címárquesian voice we have come
to recognise from the other fiction
has matured..., brought to a level
where it can at once be classical and
familiar, opalescent and pure, able
to praise and curse, laugh and cry,
fabulate and sing and when called
upon, take off and soar."
Love in the Time of Cholera is a
Caribbean story. It takes place
between 1880 and 1930, in an
unnamed Caribbean seaport city on
the coast of Colombia.
It is the story of love's many dif-
ferent shades represented by the
three main characters: the traditional,
reliable, sensible and steady Dr
Urbino, who can offer comfort, sta-
bility and the sense that love is like
a rock that anchors the heart.
Florentino Ariza offers romantic
love that throws all caution to the
Fermina chooses the safe route
and the story then becomes one of
what love represents and what one
settles for when it comes to love. Fer-
mina chooses to be practical when
it comes to love, but Márquez has
a point to make about romantic love.
It is a special type of madness that
must be experienced.
s s , s y m
A s m m z's m C .
The Sunday Arts (SAS) Book Club continues to look at the
works of late, great Caribbean author Gabriel Garcia Márquez.
1. When it comes to love, are most people practical or romantic?
2. What role does money play in the choice between practical love and
• Join us on the A B C page on Facebook to discuss this and
The A B C continues
its month-long tribute to
Festival shows changing landscape of Euro film
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