After fighting censorship for two years in Brazil, MARIGHELLA is now #1 at the Box Office in Brazil.
Marighellais a new Brazilian action drama set in 1969 based on the life of Afro-Brazilian politician and guerrilla fighter Carlos Marighella. Facing a violent military dictatorship and with little support from a timid opposition, writer-turned-politician Carlos Marighella organizes a resistance movement. Alongside revolutionaries 30 years younger than him and willing to fight, the revolutionary leader opts for action. The film is adapted from the biography Marighella - O Guerrilheiro que Incendiou o Mundo, by Mario Magalhaes. Brazilian musical artist, songwriter, and actor Seu Jorge plays Carlos Marighella.
Directed by Wagner Moura, 2019, Brazil, 155min, historical action drama, Portuguese w/ English subtitles
* Berlinale 2019 | Official Selection - Out of Competition * INTERNATIONAL INDEPENDENT CRITICS PRIZE (Premio Giuseppe Becce) * ONE OF SCREEN CRITICS' TOP FILMS FROM BERLIN 2019
"Angry and brutally necessary for the Brazil of today,Marighellais put together coolly and confidently by the green [Wagner] Moura." ~ One Room With A View
"Marighella works fine as an exciting and highly assured debut, with a terrific ensemble cast at its heart." ~ Hollywood Reporter
In the midst of the Cold War, ten young promising musicians from Mali are sent to Cuba to study music and strengthen cultural links between the two socialist countries. Combining Malian and Afro-Cuban influences, they develop a revolutionary new sound and become the iconic ensemble ‘Las Maravillas de Mali’. New Year’s Eve 2000. Richard Minier, a French music producer meets a former member of the band in Bamako and decides to bring the band back together.
Directed by Edouard Salier and Richard Minier | 2020 | 81min |France, Cuba, Mali | Documentary | Spanish, French with English subtitles
BRAZIL / 1984 / EPIC DRAMA / BRAZILIAN PORTUGUESE WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES / 114 MIN
This historical saga is a stirring fusion of folklore, political impact and dynamic story-telling, realized in vibrant tropical colors and set to the pulsing beat of Gilberto Gil's musical score. After the slave revolt of 1641, groups of enslaved black Brazilians escaped to mountainous jungle strongholds where they formed self-governing communities. This film is the chronicle of the most famous of these communities which flourished for several decades under the reign of the legendary chieftain Ganga Zumba.
DIRECTOR AND CAST
Director: Carlos Diegues
Starring: Antônio Pompêo, Tony Tornado, Zeze Motta, Zózimo Bulbul
Kafe Negro: Cuba & The Haitian Revolutionis a film that explores the social, economic & historical ramification of the Haitian Revolution on Cuba.
Kafe Negro tells the story of migrations around a small grain that became the second most important raw material on the global market. This film tells the story of the waves of migration of Haitian workers who, over time, profoundly transformed the culture and demography of Cuba and developed coffee growing on the island.
Directed by Mario Delatour | Cuba & Haiti | 52min |2020 | Documentary | French and Spanish with English subtitles
Angelica, after a long absence from Puerto Rico, returns home when her father, Wilfredo, suffers a stroke. This unexpected return and her father's illness force Angelica to re-evaluate her relationship with her mother and family members who don't accept her because of her skin color. She must face herself and discovers that she does not know who she is. After her father's death, Angelica must decide whether to return to the comfort of her previous life, dissatisfied, but secure, or set on an adventurous path to rediscover herself as an independent, modern, strong, black, and Puerto Rican woman.
Directed by Marisol Gómez-Mouakad, Puerto Rico, 2016, 100min, Drama, English & Spanish w/English subtitles
"Purposely challenging the Eurocentric beauty standards that blatantly plague Latin America on and off screen, Puerto Rican director Marisol Gómez-Mouakad sets out to tell the story of an empowered Afro-Latina fighting colorism at home in her debut feature Angélica." ~ Remezcla
“People talk about racism and sexism in the U.S.,” Gómez-Mouakad explains. “They may not do much, but in talking about it they are at least addressing the problem. In Puerto Rico — and across the Caribbean and Latin America — there is a lot of denial. If you do talk about the issues, you are accused of being over sensitive. But words have power and words can hurt.” ~ director Marisol Gómez-Mouakad
"In addition to the theme of racism, the film touches upon the implications of machismo in a patriarchal society from the perspective of women." ~ Repeating Islands
"Another glorious, glorious portrait on race and the roles women play—by pressure, by tradition, by choice. " ~ Guilie Castillo Oriard
A documentary about the working conditions of Haitian workers in one of the largest sugar cane plantations in the world, located in the Dominican Republic and belonging to the Fanjul Family, one of the most powerful families in America.
When Maria’s husband died, she was told to either leave the sugarcane plantation or to work in the only existent job: cutting and planting cane.
She decided to work in exchange for a miserable wage and a rudimentary barrack she and her five children call home. With that, she was accepting a precarious life without electricity, drinkable water and sanitary services. This is how people are stuck in a house provided by the Company, ensuring that no other basic service neither civil rights are provided, maintaining people in a life of misery. The vast extension of a sugarcane plantation in Dominican Republic offers this deal to thousands of Haitian workers. Some struggle to leave – like Maria’s daughter, with few chances of working in a hotel by the coast. Some others are forced to leave – like Leidy and her baby, when her father-in-law retires after 50 years of work. Yet, some others – like Yudelka and Telemin – organize and try to change the miserable situation everyone is living in the cane fields. They are an obstacle that hinders the functioning of the great machine that is the Plantation.
Directed by Juan A. Zapata, Dominican Republic/Spain, 2021, 76min, Documentary, Spanish w/English subtitles
" Sugar Cane Maliceis the third film from director [Juan A.]Zapata, a native of the Dominican Republic, who is also an architect and visual artist. Both sensibilities are on display inSugar Cane Malice, which pays particular attention to the built environment of the workers, and contrasts it through a series of helicopter (or drone) shots with modern construction in the island’s cities and the luxurious beach resorts that are beloved of tourists. He also finds beauty even in the sugar cane fields where these workers labor for the benefits of others. Above all, he respects the dignity of his subjects, who haven’t let their difficult lives become their only story." ~ Sarah Boslaugh
FULL FRAME Documentary Film Festival 2021 Official Competition
Festival des Libertés 2021 Official Competition
EATSA Art & Tourism is an International Film Festival 2021 Official Competition
SOMCINEMA Festival (Spain) 2021 Official Competition
Architecture Film Festival Rotterdam 2021 Official Competition
In today’s Ecuador, the black population, the descendants of enslaved Africans, continue to experience strong racial and social discrimination. Yet people in the community still strive to value their specific culture and transmit the rebellious memory of their ancestors who fought for freedom.The Esmeraldas Beachsets out to expose the invisibility of Afro-Ecuadorians and rectify the narrative of the country’s history with the film’s central protagonist, Juan García, who has worked on that project for years. He developed a school book that presents black Ecuadorians prominently since the only Afro-descendants shown in local school books are portrayed next to a marimba and football. The documentary also addresses the 1999 assassination of Prime Minister Jaime Hurtado, the first Black to hold this office.
Directed by Patrice Raynal, 2020, France/Ecuador, 58 minutes, documentary, French and Spanish with English subtitles.
CUBA AND SWITZERLAND / 2005 / SPANISH WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES / 76 MIN
Sara Gomez, An Afro-Cuban Filmmaker is a rich, multilayered documentary about Afro-Cuban director Sarah Gomez. Born in 1943, she studied literature, piano, and Afro-Cuban ethnography before becoming the first female Cuban filmmaker. A woman of great intelligence, independence and generosity, she was a revolutionary filmmaker with intersecting concerns about the Afro-Cuban community and the value of its cultural traditions, women's issues, and the treatment of the marginalized sectors of society. Through archival footage of her works and interviews with her children and husband Germinal Hernandez, cast members of her best-know film De cierta manera,as well as colleagues and friends, we get closer to a filmmaker who invented new landscapes and brought together opposite worlds.
DIRECTOR AND CAST
Director: Alessandra Muller
Starring: Sara Gómez
Part of 2-set DVD Afro-Cuba: Yesterday and Todaywhich also includes The last Rumba of Papa Montero.
This is a 2-DVD set featuringTango Negro: The African Roots of Tango (Argentina and Uruguay) a revealing documentary that traces the origins of tango back to the slave trade between Africa and South America and explains how the music and dance evolved into a Latin American form with myriad styles and La Playa D.C. from Colombia (Official Selection, Cannes 2012 and 2013 Colombia Oscar submission), about an Afro-Colombian teenager who fled the country's Pacific coast pushed out by the war, and faces the difficulties of growing up in the city of Bogota.
TANGO NEGRO: THE AFRICAN ROOTS OF TANGO
Tango Negro, The African Roots of Tango by Angolan filmmaker Dom Pedro explores the expression of Tango’s Africanness and the contribution of African cultures in the creation of the tango. Tango was a reflection of the social life of the enslaved Africans that were taken to South America - including Argentina and Uruguay - mostly from central Africa, particularly from the former Kongo Kingdom. Director Dom Pedro reveals the depth of the footprints of the African music on the tango, through this rich movie combining musical performances and interviews from many tango fans and historians in Latin America and Europe, including the renowned Argentinean pianist Juan Carlos Caceres. Directed by Dom Pedro, 2013, 93 min., France, Documentary, French/Spanish/ English subt.
LA PLAYA DC
Tomas, a young black boy driven from Colombia’s Pacific coast by the war, tries to get by in Bogota, a city of exclusion and racism. Looking for Jairo, his younger brother and closest friend lost in the streets, Tomas sets out on an initiatory journey that will test his courage, nostalgia and the wounds of the past. Directed by Juan Andres Arango, 2013, Colombia, Drama, 90 min, Spanish, English subt
MEXICO / 2018 / SPANISH WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES / 104 MIN
Critically acclaimed drama Black Mexicans / La Negrada by Jorge Pérez has recently been acquired by Artmattan Productions!
Black Mexicans / La Negrada is the first Mexican feature film about the Afro-Mexican community, filmed entirely with people from different towns around the Costa Chica in Oaxaca.
Among the black people in the Costa Chica in Oaxaca, it is socially accepted that a man lives with more than one woman. Juana and Magdalena share Neri’s love, they both know that this situation is hurting them. Juana will have to die in order to show Magdalena a new path for her life.
In Mexico, the afro communities represents only 1% of the total population. They have never been recognized as an ethnic group, nation or culture, suffering discrimination as an outcast group. LA NEGRADA is the first Mexican fiction movie filmed entirely in one of those black communities, with local people, no professional actors. An effort to give them voice and make them visible.
BRAZIL / 2001 / PORTUGUESE WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES / 100 MIN
Set in 19th century Brazil - at a time when slavery was still at the foundation of the Latin American economy - this fascinating historical drama is loosely based on the life of Black sculptor Antonio Francisco Lisboa "Aleijadinho," one of the greatest sculptors of Latin America.
U.S.A. / Netherlands / 2019 / ENGLISH / SPANISH w/English Subtitles / 88 MIN
Angels on Diamond Street spotlights three women fighting for social justice in an African-American church in Philadelphia. We follow head cook Mamie, former Black Panther Barbara and Pastor Renee at the soup kitchen of the Church of the Advocate: a national monument with a rich history in the civil rights movement.
When a Mexican immigrant, Carmela, asks the church for sanctuary, she and her children are welcomed with open arms. Pastor Renee courageously defies the ICE immigration authorities in an act of civil disobedience. A documentary about compassion that invites us to forget about all borders, be they of race, nationality or religion.
"Angels on Diamond Street, by the Netherlands-based director Petr Lom, is rich with quotable quotes. It is a tender look at an American church with an old, persevering, social justice soul, and the people who make their soup kitchen a communal magnet.
The film was recorded during a two-year focus on North Philadelphia's activist congregation of the Church of the Advocate in the heart of a poor, African American neighborhood. The church building is a huge, stone beauty finished in 1887, named the George W. South Memorial Church, but is best known by its current moniker. Informative and strung together chronologically, it grows into an occasional conversation between the man behind the camera and the people he follows. You can read a lot in its details." ~ JoAnne Velin, moderntimes.review.com
USA / 2017 / ENGLISH AND SPANISH WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES / 47 MIN
This latest documentary by the Dean of Afro-Cuban Cinema Sergio Giral investigates the black Cuban exile community in South Florida, since the first wave of political refugees in the 1959 revolutionary aftermath, to today. It tracks its presence throughout the region, and highlights its contribution to Miami's civic culture through testimonies and visual documentation.
Race and its impact on the art and history of Brazil are highlighted in this two-disc set with Joel Zito Araujo's documentary Denying Brazil (A Negacao do Brasil, 92 mins) and Geraldo Santos Pereira's Aleijadinho: Passion, Glory and Torment (Aleijadinho: Paixao, Gloria e Suplicio, 100 mins.)
Denying Brazil A Negacao do Brasil
A documentary film about the taboos, stereotypes, and struggles of Black actors in Brazilian television "soaps." Based on his own memories and on a sturdy body of research evidence, the director analyzes race relations in Brazilian soap operas, calling attention to their likely influence on Black people's identity-forming processes
Aleijadinho: Passion, Glory and Torment Aleijadinho: Paixao, Gloria e Suplicio
Set in 18th century Brazil - a time when slavery was still the foundation of the Latin American economy - this fascinating historical drama is loosely based on the life of Black sculptor Antonio Francisco Lisboa "Aleijadinho," one of the greatest sculptors of Latin America. “[DENYING BRAZIL is] a strong and significant work of intelligence." – Phil Hall, FILM THREAT
“[Aleijadinho is an] ambitious biopic of 18th century black Brazilian sculptor/architect Antonio Francisco Lisboa (aka Aleijadinho).” – Ronnie Scheib, VARIETY
HAITI / 2007 / CREOLE AND FRENCH WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES / 110 MIN
Jimmy Jean-Louis -- featured among the cast of the television phenomenon “Heroes,” -- stars as musician extraordinaire in denial, President, in this Haitian comedy-drama about the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Dao is the biggest movie star in Haiti, the self-proclaimed "President of Compas." He has women falling at his feet and men emulating him. He feels invincible-living the life of a rock star--sex, drugs and alcohol--except that he can no longer hide his illness which is threatening to derail his career. Despite pressure from his manager, he refuses to get tested for AIDS, turning instead to rituals, spells, and the church. At one of his concerts, he rescues Nina from the leery advances of Larieux, a wealthy and powerful businessman, who Nina's mother wants her to marry. As romance blossoms between Dao and Nina, who likes Dao despite his fame, not because of it, Larieux plots his revenge. Also starring Riccardo Lefeuvre and Jessica Geneus.
HAITI AND GERMANY / 1999 / CREOLE WITH FRENCH AND ENGLISH SUBTITLES / 60 MIN
Looking for Life introduces the viewer to two women, Anne-Rose and Rosemene, who each one has their own particular way of battling through life. The former makes lunches in a factory yard in Port-au-Prince and sells her meals to the factory workers; the latter is employed in the same factory as a production worker making pullovers and T-shirts. Every day she buys her midday meal on credit from Anne-Rose. Through the connection between these two women the film shows part of their daily work and the constant battle for survival that they lead together with other women in Haiti. Going beyond this, however the film demonstrates the extent to which the importation of North American goods has brought about the collapse of Haitian regional production and ruined Haiti's economy. The connection between the two topics of the film reveals the significant role that Haitian women of today play in an economy that has been bled dry.
BRAZIL / 1997 / PORTUGUESE WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES / 38 MIN
On March 13, 1992, Vicente Francisco do Espirito Santo, a Black Brazilian who worked in a government-owned electricity company, was fired from his job. It did not take long for him to realize that his dismissal was directly linked to his skin color. Encouraged by his union and a strong Black empowerment movement, he began a judicial process which he won, and as a result was reinstated in his former position. This informative documentary about an unknown victory illustrates how the courts of Brazil did recognize the company's prejudice and racism in a country where such realities are usually dismissed as atypical.
THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK DESCENDANTS (EL VALLE DE LOS NEGROS)
THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK DESCENDANTS (EL VALLE DE LOS NEGROS)
DIRECTED BY Richard Salgado
Chile / 2017/ SPANISH WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES / 52 min
In the Azapa Valley (Chile), an oasis in the driest desert in the world, a group of descendants of enslaved men and women brought from Africa are organizing the first African census in the history of Chile. Their aim is to get official recognition from the State that has concealed their culture and African identity for more than 200 years.
FRANCE / 2013 / FRENCH AND SPANISH WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES / 93 MIN
Tango Negro, The African Roots of Tangoby Angolan filmmaker Dom Pedro explores the expression of Tango’s Africanness and the contribution of African cultures in the creation of the tango. Tango was a reflection of the social life of the enslaved Africans that were taken to South America - including Argentina and Uruguay - mostly from central Africa, particularly from the former Kongo Kingdom. Director Dom Pedro reveals the depth of the footprints of the African music on the tango, through this rich movie combining musical performances and interviews from many tango fans and historians in Latin America and Europe, including the renowned Argentinean pianist Juan Carlos Cáceres.
PERU ND BELGIUM / 2003 / SPANISH WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES / 54 MIN
Susana Baca is not only a champion in the performance and preservation of Afro-Peruvian heritage, but also an elegant singer whose shimmering voice sings of love, loss and life. Susana and her husband Ricardo Pereira have founded the Instituto Negrocontinuo “Black Continuum” in Lima, a spirited facility for the exploration, expression, and creation of Black Peruvian culture. While Baca has dedicated herself to researching and performing virtually all forms of Afro-Peruvian folklore, it is the lando that has become her trademark. This slow to mid-tempo, highly evocative mix of Spanish, Indigenous and African rhythms has become what the son is to Cuba, or the samba to Brazil--the lando is the sound of Black Peru.
Two exciting, colorful films spotlight the African roots of Cuba's culture by focusing on two legendary artists -- Rumbero Papa Montero and Filmmaker Sara Gomez -- in this unique box set.
THE LAST RUMBA OF PAPA MONTERO / LA ULTIMA RUMBA DE PAPA MONTERO
Get ready to rumba! The life of Cuba s last great rumbero is detailed in THE LAST RUMBA OF PAPA MONTERO, a bold story that captures Cuban traditions and culture through beautiful imagery, sensual music, and the most scorching Latin dance ever invented. Afro-Cuban mythology serves as the force behind the narrative as mythic figures guide the characters through the events of the story.
| Cuba/Martinique | 1992 | 52 mins | docu-drama in Spanish with English subtitles | Octavio Cortazar, Dir. |
“Montero is a celebration of rumba as heart and soul for a colorful Cuban landscape." - SLANT
SARA GOMEZ: AN AFRO-CUBAN FILMMAKER
Acclaimed filmmaker Sara Gomez comes to life in the rich, multilayered documentary SARA GOMEZ: AN AFRO-CUBAN FILMMAKER. Though trained in ethnography, Gomez became the first female Cuban filmmaker. Her background shaped her films, which reflect her interests in Afro-Cuban cultural traditions and women s issues. Friends and family members recall her talent, intelligence, and generosity. Ultimately SARA GOMEZ is a love story between Sara and her husband (filmmaker Germinal Hernandez), Sara and her family, and Sara and her culture. | Cuba/Switzerland | 2005 | 76 min | documentary in Spanish with English subtitles | Alessandra Muller, Dir. |
"[SARA GOMEZ] is an extremely important documentary.... " - Kwame Dixon, SCOPE
LA ULTIMA RUMBA DE PAPA MONTERO (THE LAST RUMBA OF PAPA MONTERO)
LA ULTIMA RUMBA DE PAPA MONTERO (THE LAST RUMBA OF PAPA MONTERO)
DIRECTED BYOCTAVIO CORTAZAR
CUBA AND MARTINIQUE / 1992 / SPANISH WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES / 52 MIN
A fascinating film on the rhythmic dance genre known as Rumba, La Ultima Rumba de Papa Montero dances around the life of Papa Montero, one of the famous rumberos of Cuba, assassinated during carnival. A discovery of Cuban traditions and every day life told through beautiful images, sensual music and dance. The use of Afro-Cuban mythology is the force behind the characters as orishas guide the characters' fate.
DIRECTOR AND CAST
Director: Nick Hughes
Starring: Eric Bridges Twahirwa
Starring: Cleophas Kabasita
Starring: Davis Kagenza
DVD Afro-Cuba: Yesterday and Today which also includes Sara Gomez: An Afro-Cuban Filmmaker.
CUBA/ 2008/ ENGLISH, FRENCH SUBTITLES/HISTORICAL DOCUMENTARY/ 52 MINS
The Black Mozart in Cuba is the latest act in the rehabilitation of the memory of this extraordinary human being. The film skillfully combines biographical information with performances of his works.
Born in Guadeloupe of a Senegalese enslaved woman and a French nobleman, Joseph Boulogne, Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges (1745-1799), became one of the most remarkable figures of the 18th century. He influenced the music and political life of his time. He was a genius composer and conductor, a virtuoso violinist, the best fencer in Europe, as well as the first black general in the French army. For 200 years after his death his music was rarely heard, due in part to Napoleon’s efforts to erase his existence from history. Today, his music is being rediscovered and played by orchestras and music groups around the world. In this documentary, Cuba dedicates a week of cultural activities to his memory and welcomes Saint Georges as “a great hero of the Caribbean.”
CUBA / 1986 / SPANISH WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES / 96 MIN
Placido portraits the dramatic story of Gabriel de la Concepcio Valdes (Placido), a mulatto Cuban poet accused of leading a conspiracy against the Spanish colonial government. Preoccupied by the development of Afro-Hispanic artist and craftsmen of the mid XIX century, Placido was executed after living a short and controversial life as a man between two races and between a cruel reality and a dream of freedom.