“Machuca”/ “La Historia Oficial” Review

Write a review of the movie. Did you think it was a good choice to have kids as the main characters in a movie about political  history? Why or why not?

The movie Machuca consisted of 3 main kids. Pedro Machuca, Gonzalo and Silvana who lived in Chile, During this time there was a rivalry between the Communist and Capitalist parties  and basically social classes. Machuca is poor underprivileged kid who attends a rich kid school and gets bullied for being poor. Gonzalo becomes friends with him and defends him but along with being his friend he see all the struggles that Machuca goes through such as selling flags with his cousin, Silvana, and uncle to get money for their family. In a sense I think it was a good choice to have kids play the main characters in the movie because it shows how they struggle as well such as the schools and how after this whole rivalry their education becomes different and their way of teaching changes. On the other hand it would have made more sense to cast adults as the main roles because then we would have gotten a little bit more of the feeling of how Communism and Capitalism was affecting them because they actually understand more of whats going on.

What did you learn about Chile’s political history while watching this film? How does the film compare to other events you have learned about in history?

One thing I learned about Chile’s political history is that they don’t really care about the peoples opinions, they only care about their social class. If they are for the opponent side they will do everything to eliminate them or torture them but if not they will let them walk free. Also that education is also a factor in it because its a place where they can start manipulating young kids minds into thinking about what the right thing to do. The plot in the movie was when the kids got into a fight and then that’s when the parents got involved because that was between a ‘poor’ and a ‘rich’ kid. They believed that the didn’t belong there and had to leave, so when they protested they were even more passionate about it.  This film compares to other events in history because its people protesting and fighting for one party, communism or capitalism. I guess you can say its sort of like the Vietnam War because that was a fight to prevent the spread of Communism, and keep all Southeastern Asian countries capitalist. Many people protested and many people/kids died and suffered a lot because of what they believed in.

Latin American Literature

Last week in my Latin American Literature class we watched a movie called The Devil’s Miner, listened to a song called Preparame La Cena, saw paintings by Debora Arango and read a poem by Lilian Viacava. Focusing on the song by Calle 13 and the paintings by Debora Arango a reoccurring theme was child exploitation.

In the music video “Preparame La Cena” by Calle 13 – that can be watched here; http://vimeo.com/4786133–  had many scenes happening but the main theme was child exploitation and gaining money. The video consist of many little kids putting their lives in danger by taking jobs as miners, selling themselves to gain money, and doing it all for their family. The video also shows different aged people, this goes to show that once you enter the job you never end up leaving. You stay working for them until you die or get injured and cant work no more. Its upsetting to see kids at such a young age to have to wokr to support their family even if it mean selling themselves short.

Similarly in the paintings by Debora Arango you see a woman exploiting herself to two men, possibly doing it for money. It is said to say that the women is selling herself but deep inside she is has the heart of an innocent girl who has done nothing besides surviving in the world even if it meant not doing the right things. Child exploitation and human trafficking is a real and serious issue and at the same time its pretty scary because it can happen to anyone and be their only escape to a “better life”