Retrospective // Raúl Ruiz and Dialogues in Exile

“Raúl Ruiz and Dialogues in Exile”

The Retrospective of the eighth edition of the Olhar de Cinema – Curitiba International Film Festival presents dialogues between the recent histories of two South American countries. One side of the Retrospective offers eight films made by the great Chilean director Raúl Ruiz, the majority of which were filmed during the time of Chile’s military dictatorship (1973-1990). They were also all realized during years that overlapped with Brazil’s own military dictatorship (1964-1985). This second period is represented by the Retrospective’s other side, which will screen 10 films made during Brazil’s dictatorial period by Brazilian directors in exile. Special guest appearances and debates will supplement the film screenings and help audiences reflect upon the meanings of a trans-national legacy, within the context of a series whose name is inspired by Dialogues of Exiles, Ruiz’s first feature completed in France after fleeing from Chile to Europe.

“Perhaps a year ago a retrospective exploring this theme would appear to be something that simply evoked a part of our history firmly stationed in the past,” says Olhar de Cinema’s director and director of programming, Antônio Junior. “However, this retrospective now reflects a moment in which the idea of exile has unfortunately taken on a constant presence. This year’s retrospective emerges with the intent to pay homage to the work of Raúl Ruiz, while at the same time – with a freedom allowed by its inexhaustible nature – building a selection that resonates with a Latin American reality. The coup d’états and dictatorships in our region, especially between the 1960s and 1990s, forced many different filmmakers to work outside of their countries. We make connections this year between the experiences of Ruiz and those of diverse Brazilian filmmakers – Helena Solberg, Glauber Rocha, Carlos ‘Cacá’ Diegues, Ruy Guerra, Silvio Tendler, Júlio Bressane, Lucia Murat, Murilo Salles, Luiz Alberto Sanz, and Pedro Chaskel – in the form of dialogues of exile.”

Raúl Ernesto Ruiz Pino was born in Puerto Montt, Chile, in 1941 and died in Paris in 2011. During his short life, he directed more than 100 films across many different countries, with special emphasis placed on his South American birth nation – which he left for exile as a result of 1973’s coup d’etat – and the European country where he adopted residency. Ruiz’s body of work reinvented the cinema by breaking the boundaries of traditional narrative forms and restlessly seeking new ways to tell stories, often from the perspectives of characters that considered themselves exiles. Olhar will present a small selection of Ruiz’s work – the majority of which will screen in restored digital copies – that chronologically opens with his first extant feature made in Chile and closes with one of his most celebrated films, a work inspired by European literature and by Chilean folklore.

“Once we opted to consider Ruiz’s cinema under the sign of exile, the idea emerged to place his works alongside those of Brazilian filmmakers who were also forced to make films outside their nation”, continues Eduardo Valente, one of Olhar de Cinema’s programmers of feature-length films. “We believe that the chosen period’s overlapping historical circumstances gain tremendous weight upon seeing the many different treaded paths. This retrospective gives us the opportunity to screen lesser-known films by some of our most celebrated filmmakers, as well as to place these films alongside works by artists whose careers were hindered by their long struggles against Brazil’s military dictatorship. A meditation on what it means to film in exile gains further political dimensions when we abandon the ‘lone auteur’ approach to programming, even for a genius like Ruiz, in favor of placing his inspiring oeuvre side by side with productions from filmmakers from a different country.”

The following eight films directed by Raúl Ruiz have been confirmed for the Retrospective. The films will screen on recently made DCPs:

The following 10 films directed by exiled Brazilian filmmakers have also been confirmed for the Retrospective. The films will screen in their best possible digital copies:

The eighth edition of the Olhar de Cinema – Curitiba International Film Festival will take place during June 5-13th