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Historias de amor y brujería (1980)
Snake Oil Salesmen in Venezuela
This is a black comedy about various con artists who claim to sell good luck, health, and spiritual improvement or enlightenment to any suckers they can find. One of them agrees to be interviewed on TV. Mariela, a famous journalist, is interested in this brujeria because she was once helped by a woman who put her in a trance, and purged her of her guilt and persuaded her to have children. This flashback to Mariela's vision, which includes strange images of the Inca Empire, is the best scene in the movie, while the rest of it is deadpan satire, much of which I didn't get, being a New York gringo. People who live in Venezuela or Latin America would probably relate better to this film than I did and get more out of it. The VHS has no subtitles. Contains some female nudity.
A dramatic and powerful epic about Eusebio Francisco Kino, better known as Padre Kino. In his fight to explore the New World, Kino came into conflict with the Catholic Church, Spanish soldiers, Indians and nature itself. Kino's accomplishments due to his strength, endurance and ability to overcome obstacles made him a legend in his own time. An extraordinary film that should not be missed.
(From the back of the DVD)
Excellent acting and production values, if not quite as riveting as Jerico, an earlier film with a similar subject. Fans of The Mission or The End of the Spear or Dances With Wolves will enjoy Kino.
great little film
I saw this short film at New York University's series of short films in Spanish. It is simply a casual meeting between a young, very cute, mute kid and an older man. They meet on the street and then decide to go to a cheap hotel and have sex. This was not in the context of a gay film series, so it was a surprise to me and perhaps a shock to some of the audience, who may not be used to seeing such casual encounters between men. Though short and simple, David was beautifully filmed and acted, and the overall mood is more romantic than sleazy. I would like to see more of the actor who played David and I will definitely look out for more films by this director (though he is apparently more active as a producer).