Proyector Film Series – past events

Sebastian Diaz


A showcase of contemporary independent Mexican films blending fiction with non-fiction elements.
Emphasizing form over content, the themes and characters they present fall outside of the clichés of Mexico portrayed by the media and break away from commercial production schemes.

Filmmakers in attendance for all screenings!

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The Mexican Cultural Institute of New York, Remezcla, Cinema Tropical, Brooklyn Documentary Club, Mano a Mano: Mexican Culture Without Borders, Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies (CLACS) NYU, Mex and The City, Cinelandia, Mu media, IMCINE, Panorama Mezcal.

PROGRAM 2: Digging Roots of a Denied Civilization | Starting Fall 2015

Sylvestre Pantaleón – November 8 2015, 7:30pm
Director: Roberto Olivares, Jonathan Amith
Mexico 2012; 65 min
Original version: Nahuatl
Production: Roberto Olivares, Jonathan Amith

Synopsis: Told with a lyrical combination of lingering imagery and ethnographic detail, ‘Silvestre Pantaleon’ follows the protagonist as he struggles to pay for a curing ceremony and provide for his family. He dedicates himself to the only remunerative activities he knows: handcrafting rope for religious ceremonies and building seldom-used household objects that he alone still has the skills to produce.

Festivals and Awards: Best Feature-Length Documentary, 2011 Morelia Film Festival, 2011; National Geographic All Roads Film Festival; Gran Prix Tehuikan (best film, all categorie)s; 21st Montreal First Peoples’ Festival; Pemio 360° (Grand Prize), 2011 International Documentary Film Festival of Mexico City; 2012 Green Screens: Cinema Planeta, Film Society at Lincoln Center.

AFTER THE SCREENING: Discussion with Dir. Roberto Olivares and Amalia Córdova (CLACS NYU).

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Brilliant Soil – November 15th 2015, 7:30pm
Director: Sebastian Diaz, Jose Luis Figueroa
Mexico 2011; 74 min
Original version: Spanish, English, Purepecha
Production: IMCINE, Galatea audio/visual

Synopsis: Brilliant Soil focuses of the touching story of Herlinda Morales, a native potter who has dedicated her life to the prevention of lead poisoning in her community.

Festivals and Awards: Material Culture and Archaeology Film Prize award at 13th RAI International Festival of Ethnographic Film, Grand Prix winner at 8th International Film Festival on Clay and Glass, in Montpellier, France.

AFTER THE SCREENING: Discussion with Co-director Sebastian Diaz and film subject Eric O’leary (Ceramist and Chairman, Aid to Artisans International).

Rehje – December 6 2015, 7:30pm
Director: Raúl Cuesta, Anais Huerta
Mexico 2009; 67 min
Original version: Spanish
Production: IMCINE, Anaïs Huerta

Synopsis: Longing to escape the pressure and turmoil of Mexico City, a native Mazahua woman returns to her hometown only to find that things are not as idyllic as she remembered.

Festivals and Awards: Best Documentary, “Documental” FF, France, 2012; Best Documentary, Human Rights International FF, Mexico, 2009; Best Documentary, Contra el Silencio FF, Mexico, 2010; Best Documentary, Présence Autochtone FF, Canada, 2010; Jury Prize, Nepal International Indigenous FF, 2011; Special Mention, Morelia International FF, Mexico, 2009; Mexican Academy Awards Nomination, 2010.

AFTER THE SCREENING: Discussion with Dir. Anais Huerta and Emily Lloyd (Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Protection of NYC – DEP)

Cuates de Australia – December 13 2015, 7:30pm
Director: Everardo González
Mexico 2009; 67 min
Original version: Spanish
Production: Cienega Films

Synopsis: Residents from the ejido (communal land) Los Cuates de Australia in Northeast Mexico perform every year a massive exodus to look for water during drought. In this exile, men, women, elders, and children wait for the first drops of water to return to their lands, metaphor of a small town that hides from death.

Festivals and Awards: Jury Prize for Best Documentary Feature, Los Angeles Film Festival, Official Selection International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam

AFTER THE SCREENING: Discussion with Dir. Everardo González and Richard Peña (Professor at Columbia and former director of the Film Society of Lincoln Center).

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PROGRAM 1: Micro-Symphonies, the Films of Axolote Cine

A series of the work by Axolote Cine film troupe. Merging between real and oneiric landscapes, these minimal stories offer current views of Mexico, while reflecting on universal themes.
Events Partnerships: Axolote Cine, Ajenjo Cine, Cinema Tropical, The Mexican Cultural Institute of New York, Remezcla, Cinelandia, Mex And The City,  Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies at NYU,  Mano a Mano: Mexican Culture Without Borders, Brooklyn Documentary Club, Panorama Mezcal.

Malaventura – March 5th 2015, 7:30PM
Director: Michel Lipkes
Feature Fiction/Non-Fiction Hybrid
Mexico 2011; 74 min
Original version: Spanish
Production: Axolote Cine

Synopsis: One day. The old man walks the streets of the city, daily life goes on. Memories beset the man’s guilt leads him, the pain takes shape. The old man goes on his way to the end, as life continues its strange path.

Festivals and Awards: International Film Festival Rotterdam; Cine UNAM IFF; Cine Las Palmas de Gran Canaria IFF; Bradford International Film Festival; Cine de Lima Independent FF; New Horizons FF; Special Jury Mention, Morelia IFF; Special Mention FCLM Montreal.

AFTER THE SCREENING: Discussion with Dir. Michel Lipkes and Cinema Tropical director Carlos Gutiérrez.

Calle Lopez – April 2nd, 2015, 7:30PM
Director: Lisa Tillinger, Gerardo Barroso
Feature Documentary
México 2013; 80 min.
Original version: Spanish
Production: Axolote Cine, Ki Visual, Ajenjo Cine

Synopsis: The small family formed by photographers Gerardo Barroso, Lisa Tillinger and their baby moved to the noisy and full of life López Street, in historic downtown of Mexico City. Everyday-life at the place seemed worthy of a documentary, so they began to follow transients with their camera. The result is a kind of “urban symphony” in black and white, through which street vendors, mendicants and taqueros parade portraying Mexican society as a microcosm.

Festivals and Awards: Margaret Mead Film Festival; Special Jury Prize, Paris International Environmental Film Festival, FIFE.

AFTER THE SCREENING: Discussion with Dir. Lisa Tillinger and Gerardo Barroso, along with Mexican migrant workers in NYC originally from Mexico City.

Mosca – May 7th, 2015, 7:30PM
Director: Bulmaro Osornio
Feature Documentary
Mexico 2011; 98 min.
Original version: Spanish
Production: Axolote Cine, IMCINE.

Synopsis: Mosca is a night shift cab driver, a widower and father of two girls. Between his daily job and the memories of his wife, he tries to figure out his role as a father. Mosca mixes sleep and vigil to put up with her loss. MOSCA is the tale of disenchantment of a whole generation; it’s also, and above all, an unusual and powerful love story.

Festivals and Awards: Guadalajara International Film Festival (FICG26); Ambulante 2011; Canadian International Documentary Festival 2011; Segunda Semana de Cine Independiente Mexicano, Buenos Aires; 15º Festival de Invierno Montevideo

AFTER THE SCREENING: Discussion with Dir. Bulmaro Osornio and main character Oscar Torres (Mosca) along with Brooklyn gipsy cab driver and playwright Modesto ‘Flako’ Jimenez.

Wadley – June 4th, 2015, 7:30PM
Director: Matías Meyer
Feature Fiction/Non-Fiction Hybrid
Mexico 2008; 60 min
Original version: Spanish
Production: Instituto Mexicano de Cinematografía (IMCINE), Axolote Cine

Synopsis: A young man with a backpack walks all on his own into the endless Mexican cactus desert. He takes some peyote. How does he get out again? Pure cinema in the long-take tradition of Lisandro Alonso or Gus Van Sant.

Festivals and Awards: Cinema of the Future – Film Festival ROTTERDAM 2008, KODAK AWARD Best Mexican Documentary FICCO 2008, Cinéma du Réel 2008 – International Competition

AFTER THE SCREENING: Discussion with Dir. Matías Meyer and Biologist Pablo Meyer Rojas (New York Academy of Science).