Chilean Cinema 2013 #22: Isidora (2012)

(Chile 2012 90m) Cine Arte Normandie

p Gilberto Villarroel, Susana Tello d Christian Aylwin, Nicolás Superby w Christian Aylwin, Nicolás Superby, Gilberto Villarroel c Eduardo Búnster, Arnaldo Rodríguez ed Martín Núñez s Pedro Santa Cruz

a Claudia Cabezas, Diego Ruiz, Benjamín Westfall, Luis Dubó, Claudio Riveros, Catalina Saavedra, Mireya Moreno, Mireya Sotoconil, Marcelo Alonso, César Arredondo, Sonia Mena, Pedro Villagra, Mónica Carrasco, Diana Sanz, Gabriela Medina, Mario Lorca, Violeta Vidaurre, Regildo Castro

It’s hard to talk about someone who is really important to the chilean culture in a foreign language in which she wasn’t involved in… it’s a difficult task, but at the same time it’s part of the things and maybe one of the reasons as to why I decided to change languages and focus towards what I write about and in which language I’m doing it. I guess that Isidora Aguirre isn’t a well-known figure outside of Latinamerica, and maybe we’ll be lucky if she’s well known at all in the next 10 years outside of Chile. The documentary starts with Isidora herself, laying on bed, showing us pictures and telling us stories about her family and the plays that she has written, among the most famous and best written in the history of our country, and among them maybe the most famous musical that has ever come out of Chile: ‘La Pérgola de las Flores’, that is actually among the least liked plays from the author’s perspective, but it actually is one of the most profitable and it plays to this day every now and then, and it has become part of Chilean popular culture as well, being parodied and referenced in all media. The documentary mixes the interviews and conversations with Isidora herself (all made before her recent demise), a roundtable with actors and drama directors discussing the worth and political implications of her writing, and the actual representation of certain important/funny/poignant scenes from the plays, performed by mostly talented actors (hence the fact that this is a documentary, though I started listing a bunch of actors up there). The documentary works as an information vehicle, and the plays are interesting, and it makes you want to read them or see them presented on the tables once again, but it’s nothing beyond that: a vehicle of discovery, it’s not a reflection on her worth nor her importance, but I think it’s enough right now.

8/10

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