4 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
looking at perfection itself
cookie_on_fire from Slovenia
15 October 2008
Thank you, Ariel Dorfman, for being able to speak for the Dead. I am
sure they would be proud and honored by Dorfman's voice in this movie.
It has been several hours since I've seen this documentary, but it just
doesn't let go of my thoughts. Not only Dorfman is a witness, a story
teller, an intellectual in an exile, he also provides a humble, yet
interesting criticism of his own survival of the coup: "Maybe I should
have gone there, expose myself and get killed. But I was a coward." He
made his self-preservation fear justified by his work and testimony.
But this story is beyond accusation of the political injustice and
violent regime. It is also beyond history. Dorfman doesn't need to
point a finger, although the story has to be told for the Death he is
representing, for the people that "vanished", for the dead bodies, that
have been, by making them disappear for their family, "deprived of
their own death". The death has been unofficial for them. So was the
story of his grandma - Dorfman has to face the guilt of being abroad
and the pain of being "deprived" of her death. I also love the fact
Death and the Maiden, his most renown work (besides this movie?) is
included, because this work is ubiquitous and timeless. You can apply
it to any crisis, any abuse of human rights and - any country in the
Nemo propheta in patria: Dorfman admits the exile has given him many
multicultural dimensions, provided a different perspective for him. He
visits his homeland to later return in the USA. A friend of him
explains why this is needed, both for the USA and for Chile: his voice
needs to be out in the world.
Another turning point in the documentary: in a spirit of true
democracy, Dorfman would fight for the rights of Pinochet fans to
express their opinion. Puzzled and shocked by Pinochet's heart attack,
Dorfman explores the temptations of revengeful feelings, only to reject
them instantly: "I don't want anybody's death, not even my worst
enemies'. I want him to be prosecuted." Similarities with Milosevic,
anyone? Am I the only one who sees the man is a Nobel prize material?!
I LOVE IT and am looking forward to see it again at least twice. The
messages in it are too strong to be neglected and overlooked.
Furthermore, you will not be bored for a single moment. This is
emotionally loaded, well timed movie. I did not rate it 10 just because
I empathize politically, I strongly believe this is an excellent made
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