Cuba Culture

Cuba Film Festival in New Zealand

Posted January 28, 2005 by publisher in Cuba Culture.

Si! Cuba! a season of ten films celebrating forty years of film production in Cuba will be presented in Auckland and Wellington commencing late next month. The season is the second event in a New Zealand-Cuba Film Exchange that began in February this year with extensive New Zealand film programmes in Havana and Matanzas.

“The primary intention of the inaugural New Zealand-Cuba Film Exchange is to increase understanding between the peoples of the two countries through the medium of film spanning the last ~50 years,” says organiser Julie Webb-Pullman. “New Zealand and Cuba are both island nations with histories of colonisation, and bigger neighbours against whom they frequently struggle to assert and maintain their independent identities. Despite their small sizes and limited resources, both countries have created and sustained world-class film industries, producing international award-winning films, yet maintaining their unique cultural identities.”

The Cuban films have been selected by the organisers of the New Zealand Film Festival who will also assist with the administration of the season. “ICAIC, the Cuba’s film institute, opened their vaults to us and we have selected ten films to illustrate the strength, diversity and changes that have taken place in filmmaking during the Castro era,” says Film Festival director, Bill Gosden. “We’ll be showing such classics as the historical epic Lucia to the recent hit Life is to Whistle, a lyrical drama of life in contemporary Havana.

Si! Cuba! will take place at the Academy, Auckland between September 30 and October 13 and at the Paramount, Wellington from October 7 to 20.

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