Cine Las Americas is a multi-cultural, non-profit organization based in Austin. It is mostly known for its annual film festival, but have year-round film screenings as well. It has screened more than 1,200 Latino and indigenous films and videos and has partnered with local schools to create educational media programs that serve the minority youth in the city. Their mission is to promote cross-cultural understanding and growth by educating, entertaining and challenging diverse audiences through film and media arts.
Their latest screening in collaboration with The Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Culture Center (MACC) and St. Edward’s University, ¡Ay, Carmela!, is a 1990 film by Carlos Saura. It is about a couple of vaudeville artists who perform for the Republican troops, but are captured and imprisoned by the Nationalist army of Francisco Franco along with a group of Polish fighters. They are summoned by Lt. Ripamonte, an Italian theatre director who joined Mussolini’s fascist government and was sent to Spain to fight with the Nationalists troops. Under Ripamonte’s direction, the performers remodel Teatro Goya to present their spectacle and entertain Nationalist troops. The artists realize that they have to decided if they are going to compromise their political and artistic ideals in order to save their lives when the Polish prisoners are brought in to witness the show before their execution.
The free film screening, based on the play by José Sanchis Sinisterra and starring Carmen Maura, Andres Pajares, Gabino Diego, and Maurizio de Razza. ¡Ay, Carmela! is presented as part of the current series “Transitions in Spanish Cinema: Spain from the 1930’s to the present.” The film will be screened on Wednesday, October 24 at 7 p.m. at the MACC located at 600 River Street. The drama/comedy is in Spanish and Catalan with English subtitles. The film lasts around 102 minutes. Visit the official event page on Facebook here.