Con subtítulos en español: Baracoa

This is the film offering for this weekend from Instituto Cervantes. They are free, but you do need to book to get the link. Like the film last week, this is a semi-documentary (or as the co-producers describe it ‘narrative non-fiction documentary’, this time about two boys, one aged 13 and the other 9, who have grown up together in a country town. Now the older boy is shifting to La Habana. Much of the film involves the two boys romping, wrestling and teasing each other. My knowledge of Spanish slang is insufficient to understand much of what they were saying, but it all seemed to be good-natured offensiveness. It is summer holidays, and the kids just roam around disused buildings and empty swimming pools, with nary an adult in sight. Once the older boy Antuán shifts to Havana, the younger boy Leonal visits him but things have changed.

I gather that this was filmed documentary-style, and largely unscripted. I’d forgotten the slow easiness of Cuba, even in Havana. It’s all very subtle and atmospheric, but not much happens.

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