CiNEOLA is a platform for Latin American stories, connecting audiences with diverse representations of Latinoamérica on film.
Teresa (80) a Cuban militant fixes her TV to see the visit of Barack Obama to Cuba. She shares her reflections and memories about the relations between Cuba and the USA. This historical moment brings her to remember her life as a militant.
As the only country in the region to have resisted U.S. imperialism, Cuba and the Cuban Revolution have been an inspiration for movements across Latin America. Including my home country, El Salvador, in their fight against a military dictatorship funded by the U.S. military.
Therefore as a Salvadorean filmmaker, I was interested in further exploring the Cuban Revolution. Specifically, the lived experience of guerrilleras, the revolutionary women fighters, as there is less representation of them in media and film. Men have always been the protagonist of history even in left-wing movements. It was important to document and portray the herstory of a woman who fought in the Cuban Revolution, her motivations for participating, her point of view, and how she lived through the struggle during the U.S. embargo against Cuba.
During my film studies at the EICTV in Cuba, we traveled to la Sierra Maestra to create a short documentary in a month’s time. It was clear to me then, that I had to find a guerrilla. From the outside, Teresa seemed to be a quiet, fragile 80-year-old woman, but when we began to speak about politics and Cuban-U.S. relations, she defended passionately the Cuban Revolution. Before me was a woman with strong convictions, a revolutionary spirit, and a survivor.
The Cuban Revolution hasn’t been perfect and there are many things to improve. To romanticize the Cuban Revolution is to overlook its many failings. I am grateful to Teresa and the many Cuban women whose resilience inspired me. This film is dedicated to them.
director, script, cinematography & editor CELINA ESCHER direct sound ILIKAA BHANDARI production EICTV & TELEVISIÓN SERRANA color correction AKLEY OLTON sound post production ANGEL ALONSO music SILVIO RODRIGUEZ "PEQUEÑA SERENATA DIURNA" starring TERESA PEREZ & ORLANDO MARTINEZ