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Man of Two Havanas (2007)

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Okay, here's the situation. I was born in Havana. That makes me Cuban. But, I was raised in little Havana, which makes me Cuban-American. However, since I don't see Castro as the root of ... See full summary »

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Title: Man of Two Havanas (2007)

Man of Two Havanas (2007) on IMDb 8.4/10

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Credited cast:
Peter Kornbluh ...
Max Lesnick ...
Miriam Lesnik ...
Vivien Lesnik Weisman ...


Okay, here's the situation. I was born in Havana. That makes me Cuban. But, I was raised in little Havana, which makes me Cuban-American. However, since I don't see Castro as the root of all evil in the universe, nor would I strangle him with my bare hands given the opportunity, I am a little out of step with my tribe. I always have been. And I really don't care. My dad, on the other hand, does care. He cares a great deal. Back in Havana he was a revolutionary and fought alongside Castro for the freedom of the Cuban people. Then he had a falling out with his old friend and it was Miami, here we come. But his animosity towards Castro did not last and he soon wanted dialogue with the Cuban government. Perhaps, to live in peace. That's when the shit hit the fan. Bombings, death threats and drive by shootings were a daily occurrence in our home. But who would do this to us? We were Americans. Surely, it must be the Communists, right? Wrong. My father became the focal point of the ... Written by

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28 April 2007 (USA)  »

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this is not about you!
12 October 2008 | by (Slovenia) – See all my reviews

This is a narcissistic try of Vivien Lesnik Weisman to make a "big documentary". Although it includes great political issues, that need to be put out in the light and discussed, she makes a crucial mistake: she makes it all about HER. Her voice is unnatural (in narrative mode), artificial. We see that when she speaks in the scenes, her voice is actually normal and calm, without unnecessary grandiose manner. When we get interested in people she is portraying, she cuts it and pulls it back to ... herself. It is like looking a family album, wanting to know more, much more, while she keeps interrupting our questions to be able to point at herself at the photos. When visiting interiors, the bigger amount of time would be spent on camera chasing her (in a nice dress) than showing the place itself.

I am sure the issue of this movie is extremely important, it is becoming more important every day, when Cubans are literally left in starvation and poverty, but Lesnik Weisman just didn't make a good job. She apparently also never understood her father, nor his humility, energy, cause and the idea of revolution. She concludes the documentary claiming she is able to understand him now, come closer to him - but abuses this claim to steal the media cameras from him and focus them - you guessed by now - on herself.

Other than that, the structure of the movie suffers greatly, the shifts between the scenes and happenings are many times too rough, the monologues are left too unfocused. She tries to fit everything in this movie: politics, Cuban life, American life, both of the languages, lots of violent history, family life, political opponents, terrorists and herself. Overcrowded.

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