NYFF Shorts Program 3: Letters from Home

September 30 · 8:00 pm

Virtual Event

Directed by Luis Arnías, Alexandra Cuesta, Carla Simón, Dominga Sotomayor.

2020, Venezuela, USA, Ecuador, Spain, Chile, 91 min.

This program will screen virtually from September 25 at 8pm ET through September 30 at 8pm ET.

For this program, please click the menu button in the upper right-hand corner of your player window to select the next video in the playlist.

A collection of films that play on narratives, both real and surreal, that we create for ourselves and the things that we choose to believe when confronted with uncertainty. Stories told in this block include a couple facing the choice of spending eternity together, a boy finding his own moral compass, a man using his childhood imagination to cope with a grim reality, a woman on a quest to regain her ability to dream, a college student orchestrating a fiction about his life for his visiting mother, a pair of trapeze artists whose trust is critically tested, and a young girl who escapes deportation by becoming a mermaid.

Directed by: Luis Arnías.
12 Mins | Venezuela/USA

Through its rhythmic montage and mix of observational and surreal imagery, Malembe forges oblique linkages between the United States and Venezuela, conveying the strange dissociation of being uprooted, of living between places. As a knife cuts through sky, through snow, and through fruit, quasi-ethnographic footage—with its conventional markers of music, food, ritual—joins with home-movie auto-portraiture of a New England winter, communicating a sense of dislocation at once vertiginously queasy and absurdly comic.

Directed by: Alexandra Cuesta.
19 Mins | Ecuador/USA

Alexandra Cuesta’s film collects sketches, texts, and minor epiphanies. Summery landscapes, lakeside reveries, desolate construction sites and diners, blighted strip mall suburbia, sunny autumns—these fragments accumulate into a portrait of domesticity and love that nonetheless betrays a quiet unease, with the camera becoming a tool for the exorcism of specters.

Directed by: Carla Simón and Dominga Sotomayor
20 Mins | Chile/Spain

In patchwork epistolary form, a correspondence between two filmmakers unfolds in images, sounds, and words, as they report on their lives, exchange pictures, and describe their dreams. The recent deaths of elder relatives raises the question of maternity and the futures of their families, their countries, and their art. Is it possible to make films and have children?

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