Guadalajara rocks!

Just got back from the Guadalajara Film Festival, after gorging on undistributed Latin American films and tequila.  There was a palpable sense here that filmmakers are opening up to alternate paths of distribution, and ready to do whatever it takes to get their films out to audiences. I walked away feeling that this new realism might actually lead to something interesting.

On my final night in Guadalajara, I went to see Emir Kusturica’s new doc about the Argentinan soccer star Maradona. As an American with very little interest  in soccer, I found the film incoherent.  But after the screening, Kusturica came on stage with his band–Emir Kusturica and the No Smoking Orchestra–and it became the highlight of the festival. Emir plays a mean lead guitar, and the band puts on quite a show. I heard someone describe their music as Yugoslavian Punk, but to my ears it sounded more like Weimar Republic-era cabaret, as performed by Devo. An audience of around 4000 Mexicans went wild.  It was a stunning example of cross-cultural communication—which after all is one of the missions of an international event such as this. Check out this crude video (taken on my Treo Pro) for a taste…

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