Santiago Álvarez (filmmaker)

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Santiago Álvarez Román (March 18, 1919 May 20, 1998) was a Cuban filmmaker. He wrote and directed many documentaries about Cuban and American culture. His "nervous montage" technique of using "found materials," such as Hollywood movie clips, cartoons, and photographs, [1] is considered a precursor to the modern video clip.

Cuba Country in the Caribbean

Cuba, officially the Republic of Cuba, is a country comprising the island of Cuba as well as Isla de la Juventud and several minor archipelagos. Cuba is located in the northern Caribbean where the Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean meet. It is east of the Yucatán Peninsula (Mexico), south of both the U.S. state of Florida and the Bahamas, west of Haiti and north of both Jamaica and the Cayman Islands. Havana is the largest city and capital; other major cities include Santiago de Cuba and Camagüey. The area of the Republic of Cuba is 110,860 square kilometres (42,800 sq mi). The island of Cuba is the largest island in Cuba and in the Caribbean, with an area of 105,006 square kilometres (40,543 sq mi), and the second-most populous after Hispaniola, with over 11 million inhabitants.

Documentary film nonfictional motion picture

A documentary film is a nonfictional motion picture intended to document some aspect of reality, primarily for the purposes of instruction, education, or maintaining a historical record. "Documentary" has been described as a "filmmaking practice, a cinematic tradition, and mode of audience reception" that is continually evolving and is without clear boundaries. Documentary films were originally called 'actuality' films and were only a minute or less in length. Over time documentaries have evolved to be longer in length and to include more categories, such as educational, observational, and even 'docufiction'. Documentaries are also educational and often used in schools to teach various principles. Social media platforms such as YouTube, have allowed documentary films to improve the ways the films are distributed and able to educate and broaden the reach of people who receive the information.

United States federal republic in North America

The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico. The State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean. The U.S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The extremely diverse geography, climate, and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.

Contents

Biography

He studied in the United States but in the mid-1940s returned to Cuba, where he worked as a music archivist in a television station and participated in Communist Party activities. [1] After the Cuban Revolution he became a founding member of the Cuban Film Institute (ICAIC) and directed its weekly Latin American Newsreel. [2]

Communist Party of Cuba ruling party of Cuba

The Communist Party of Cuba is the ruling political party in the Republic of Cuba. It is a communist party of the Marxist–Leninist model. The Cuban constitution ascribes the role of the party to be the "leading force of society and of the state". Since April 2011, the First Secretary of the Central Committee has been Raúl Castro, younger brother of the previous First Secretary Fidel Castro, who died on 25 November 2016. The Second Secretary has been José Ramón Machado Ventura.

Cuban Revolution revolution in Cuba culminating in 1959

The Cuban Revolution was an armed revolt conducted by Fidel Castro's revolutionary 26th of July Movement and its allies against the authoritarian government of Cuban President Fulgencio Batista. The revolution began in July 1953, and continued sporadically until the rebels finally ousted Batista on 31 December 1958, replacing his government with a revolutionary socialist state. 26 July 1959 is celebrated in Cuba as the Day of the Revolution. The 26th of July Movement later reformed along communist lines, becoming the Communist Party in October 1965.

One of his most famous works, the short Now (1964) about racial discrimination in the USA, mixed news photographs and musical clips featuring singer/actress Lena Horne. Other well-known works included the anti-imperialist satire LBJ (1968) and 79 Springs (1969), a poetic tribute to Ho Chi Minh. In 1968, he collaborated with Octavio Getino and Fernando E. Solanas (members of Grupo Cine Liberación) on the four-hour documentary Hora de los hornos, about foreign imperialism in South America.

Lena Horne American singer, actress, civil rights activist and dancer

Lena Mary Calhoun Horne was an American singer, dancer, actress, and civil rights activist. Horne's career spanned over 70 years appearing in film, television, and theater. Horne joined the chorus of the Cotton Club at the age of 16 and became a nightclub performer before moving to Hollywood, where she had small parts in numerous movies, and more substantial parts in the 1943 films Cabin in the Sky and Stormy Weather. Because of the Red Scare and her political activism, Horne found herself blacklisted and unable to get work in Hollywood.

Ho Chi Minh Vietnamese communist leader and Chairman of the Workers Party of Vietnam

Hồ Chí Minh, born Nguyễn Sinh Cung, also known as Nguyễn Tất Thành,Nguyễn Ái Quốc, Bác Hồ or simply Bác, was a Vietnamese Communist revolutionary leader who was Chairman and First Secretary of the Workers' Party of Vietnam. He was also Prime Minister (1945–1955) and President (1945–1969) of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam. He was a key figure in the foundation of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam in 1945 as well as the People's Army of Vietnam and the Viet Cong during the Vietnam War.

Octavio Getino was an Argentine film director and writer who is best known for co-founding, along with Fernando Solanas, the Grupo Cine Liberación and the school of Third Cinema.

Among the other subjects he explored in his films were the musical and cultural scene in Latin America and the dictatorships which gripped the region.

Latin America region of the Americas where Romance languages are primarily spoken

Latin America is a group of countries and dependencies in the Western Hemisphere where Romance languages such as Spanish, Portuguese, and French are predominantly spoken; it is broader than the terms Ibero-America or Hispanic America. The term "Latin America" was first used in an 1856 conference with the title "Initiative of the America. Idea for a Federal Congress of the Republics", by the Chilean politician Francisco Bilbao. The term was used by Napoleon III's French government in the 1860s as Amérique latine to consider French-speaking territories in the Americas, along with the larger group of countries where Spanish and Portuguese languages prevailed, including the Spanish-speaking portions of the United States Today, areas of Canada and the United States where Spanish, Portuguese and French are predominant are typically not included in definitions of Latin America.

The second chapter of French director Jean-Luc Godard's Histoire(s) du cinéma is dedicated to Álvarez, amongst others. [3]

Jean-Luc Godard French-Swiss film director, screenwriter and film critic

Jean-Luc Godard is a French-Swiss film director, screenwriter and film critic. He rose to prominence as a pioneer of the 1960s French New Wave film movement.

<i>Histoire(s) du cinéma</i> 1998 film by Jean-Luc Godard

Histoire(s) du cinéma is an 8-part video project begun by Jean-Luc Godard in the late 1980s and completed in 1998. The longest, at 266 minutes, and one of the most complex of Godard's films, Histoire(s) du cinéma is an examination of the history of the concept of cinema and how it relates to the 20th century; in this sense, it can also be considered a critique of the 20th century and how it perceives itself. The project is widely considered the most important work of the late period of Godard's career.

He died of Parkinson's disease in Havana on May 20, 1998 and was buried there in the Colon Cemetery.

Parkinsons disease long-term degenerative neurological disorder that mainly affects movement

Parkinson's disease (PD) is a long-term degenerative disorder of the central nervous system that mainly affects the motor system. Non-motor symptoms, however, become increasingly common as the disease worsens. The symptoms generally come on slowly over time. Early in the disease, the most obvious are shaking, rigidity, slowness of movement, and difficulty with walking. Thinking and behavioral problems may also occur. Dementia becomes common in the advanced stages of the disease. Depression and anxiety are also common, occurring in more than a third of people with PD. Other symptoms include sensory, sleep, and emotional problems. The main motor symptoms are collectively called "parkinsonism", or a "parkinsonian syndrome".

Colon Cemetery, Havana cemetery

El Cementerio de Cristóbal Colón, was founded in 1876 in the Vedado neighbourhood of Havana, Cuba to replace the Espada Cemetery in the Barrio de San Lázaro.. Named for Christopher Columbus, the cemetery is noted for its many elaborately sculpted memorials. It is estimated the cemetery has more than 500 major mausoleums. Before the Espada Cemetery and Colon Cemetery were built, interments took place in crypts at the various churches throughout Havana, for example, at the Havana Cathedral or the Iglesia del Espíritu Santo in Havana Vieja.

Selected works

See also

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References

  1. 1 2 "Santiago Alvarez". Hollywood.com. Archived from the original on 2013-01-25. Retrieved 2009-06-05.
  2. "Santiago Alvarez". Film Reference. Retrieved 2009-06-05.
  3. Histoire(s) du cinéma: Seul le cinéma on IMDb. Retrieved 2011-07-11.