Dreams of Suitcases and a Blue Lobster: Latin Surrealism

Film - Series | September 4 | 7 p.m. |  Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive

 Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive

This program brings together short films that share an interest in exploring cinema’s oneiric, disturbing, and irrational potential. Within The Blue Lobster, a lost treasure from Barranquilla, Colombia, about a foreign secret agent investigating radioactive lobsters, one can detect the roots of what would later become magic realism. Álvaro Cepeda Zamudio [and co-filmmaker Gabriel García Márquez] avoid the literary, the theatrical, and the picturesque. Luis Ernesto Arocha, also from Barranquilla, is represented with a work about the sculptures of Bernardo Salcedo. The frenetic editing and dense and fragmented soundtrack bewilder the viewer’s perception. Photographer Horacio Coppola created the short Freudian exercise Traum while a student at the Bauhaus. Raúl Ruiz’s first film, a surreal mix of suitcases and somnambulists, was lost for decades in a Chilean archive during Pinochet’s military rule. Mariana Botey’s The Magic of the Smoked Mirror, made in collaboration with the actor-director-artist Juan José Gurrola, represents an intersection between two generations of Mexico’s avant-garde.