Chilean Cinema 2013 #31: Rosita: La favorita del Tercer Reich (2012)

(Chile 2012 70m) Cineteca Nacional La Moneda

p Roberto Trejo, Patricia Leiva d/c Pablo Berthelon w Pablo Berthelon, Roberto Trejo ed Constanza Aliaga, Pablo Berthelon

What is the real value and importance of a documentary that mostly serves as a vehicle of new information that was previously ignored by the viewer? Is it any better than a nature documentary that explores the life and the death of animals in Africa or other parts of the world? That’s more similar and classificable as a reportage, a news item more than anything else, an audiovisual investigative report. In a way, the main goal of this documentary is to tell everyone how important and real Rosita Serrano, called the Nightingale of Chile, was in the world, specifically Europe and Germany. So, what can we say about the film? It’s about Rosita Serrano and how famous she was, her life and her political views as she entertained the Third Reich in the heydey of the Second World War, we also have some good close testimonies about how she actually helped some jews, sung for them and then even married one. Besides the great stock footage that was found, the magnificent recordings, the way that they managed to film interviews with practically everyone that was ever important in her life, it doesn’t amount to much else besides a good filmed kind biography of one of the most interesting and least explored Chilean characters in its cultural and popular history. I think, nonetheless, that it can be completely watchable under those terms, it’s fascinating to see the amount of information, the movies in which she starred, the interviews, her ability with languages and the life that she lived. In a sense, it’s a shame that not much else was done by the director, he could’ve been more inquisitive, going for a more violent approach towards finding the truth behind the character and her family. For example, there’s a whole issue regarding how she lost her inheritance when she came back to Chile, and that’s never truly explained, but only hinted at something very bad that happened with some of the family of Rosita, those who betrayed her, according to the once beautiful singer. Even if it’s only to hear her beautiful voice you can have your ticket paid for, but as art, well, you’re in better luck with other documentaries about similar subjects. ‘Searching for Sugar Man’ (2012) is one that has similar materials to this one, and it still manages to become one of the greatest documentaries of the recent time through creative editing and direction. Anyway, a shame.

7/10

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