06 · 1 · 17

Great Classics of Mexican Cinema to be screened in Bologna

The program Revolution and Adventure: Mexican Cinema in the Golden Age, composed of eight classics of Mexican cinema, will be showcased as part of Il Cinema Ritrovato in Bologna, Italy, thanks to the effort of the Morelia International Film Festival (FICM), in collaboration with the UNAM Filmoteca and the Cineteca Nacional.

Il Cinema Ritrovato is organized annually by the Cineteca di Bologna and it stands out as one of the best festivals in the world to present films of great historical value, restored and digitized by film archives. The XXXI edition of this festival will be taking place from June 24 to July 2, 2017.

The program Revolution and Adventure: Mexican Cinema in the Golden Age begins with the birth of sound cinema in the early ’30s and includes a variety of styles and genres from the ’40s and ’50s, until the early 1960s. The films included in the program are:

  • El compadre Mendoza / Godfather Mendoza (1933) by Fernando de Fuentes. Courtesy of the UNAM Filmoteca. Edition restored by the UNAM Filmoteca.
  • Dos monjes / Two Monks (1934) by Juan Bustillo Oro. Courtesy of The Film Foundation / UNAM Filmoteca.
  • Historia de un gran amor (1942) by Julio Bracho. Courtesy of Televisa.
  • Una familia de tantas / One Family Among Many (1948) by Alejandro Galindo. Courtesy of Nuevo Cinema Latino.
  • Maclovia (1948) by Emilio “El Indio” Fernández. Courtesy of the UNAM Filmoteca.
  • Aventurera (1950) by Alberto Gout. Courtesy of Olympusat O&O Hispanic Networks.
  • El rebozo de Soledad / Soledad´s Shawl (1952) by Roberto Gavaldón. Courtesy of Sindicato de Trabajadores de la Producción Cinematográfica.
  • La sombra del caudillo / The Shadow of the Tyrant (1960) by Julio Bracho. Courtesy of Sección Técnicos y Manuales del STPC.

The selection is bookended by two films that were considered highly controversial in their time — Fernando de Fuentes’ El compadre Mendoza (1933) and Julio Bracho’s La sombra del caudillo (1960) — both of which offer a devastating commentary on the Revolution and its aftermath. These films set the tone for this collection of eight classic Mexican films, which, considered as a whole, offers a critical and intelligent exploration of the widespread disenchantment that the Revolution left in its wake, and an exciting showcase of the varied artistic responses that it provoked over four decades.

<em>La sombra del caudillo</em> (1960) by Julio Bracho

La sombra del caudillo (1960) by Julio Bracho

With a stellar collective cast, including some of the most important actors in Mexican cinema history — María Félix, Arturo de Córdova, Jorge Negrete, Gloria Marín, Andrea Palma, Fernando Soler, Pedro Armendáriz and Ninón Sevilla, among others — the films range in genre from the gothic thriller Dos monjes (Juan Bustillo Oro, 1934) to the traditional, rural work of Emilio “El Indio” Fernández, by way of the musical and the melodrama. From the explosive eroticism of the cabaret film in Aventurera (Alberto Gout, 1950), to the sophisticated cinema of directors like Julio Bracho, Roberto Gavaldón and Alejandro Galindo, the program offers a window onto the Golden Age of Mexican cinema, and beyond; a way for viewers to begin to understand the complex changes that were at work in a country in a state of flux.

Another representative of Mexican cinema that will be shown this year in Bologna is Tepeyac (1917) by José Manuel Ramos, Carlos E. González and Fernando Sáyago; in an edition restored by the UNAM Filmoteca. Tepeyac will be part of the section A Hundred Years Ago, integrated by 50 movies made in 1917.

These classics of Mexican cinema will be exhibited at Il Cinema Ritrovato in 35mm or in their digital editions restored by the UNAM Filmoteca and the Cineteca Nacional. The program was curated by FICM.

We appreciate the collaboration of the companies and organizations that generously authorized the exhibition of their films.