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March 28th – April 2nd, 2017 / Cinema Muzeul Țăranului & Cinema Elvire Popesco / the 7th edition


Directed by: 
Cinema Elvire Popesco - Saturday, April 1, 2017 - 21:00
Cinema Elvire Popesco - Sunday, April 2, 2017 - 18:00
Written by: 
Marcelo Martinessi
Librada Martínez, Cinthia Quiñonez, Raulito Cáceres
Luis Arteaga
Marcelo Martinessi
Catriel Vildosola
Marcelo Martinessi
La Babosa Cine, Villa del Cine, Alba Cultural
Romanian Premiere
With the support of

Dealing, like many of Marcelo Martinessi’s previous films, with the recent history of Paraguay, The Lost Voice is based on original interviews about the 2012 Curuguaty massacre which triggered political chaos and the removal of the acting president. The hand-held camera follows an old woman with a heavily creased face of awe-inspiring beauty through her daily chores. She is the mother of one of the victims. During her spoken recollections, the screen turns black as if showing respect, and the radio broadcast from the time of the massacre, a constant background sound throughout the film, cuts out. Shifting between speech and image and almost never allowing them to sync, the film evades the conventional interview format and functions much as memory itself, fragmentary and abounding in blind spots. The massacre itself is openly suggested only in one shaky shot of the frantic movements of panic-stricken chickens with gunshot sounds from the radio in the background. The rest is about the frightening calm after an - emotional and political - storm. (Ioana Florescu, BIEFF 2017)

Marcelo Martinessi

Marcelo Martinessi (b. 1973 in Paraguay) studied communication before going to the London Film School. His work revolves around memory, identity and human rights in his home country. He has also researched on the relationship between cinema and literature, adapting short stories. Karai Norte (2009) is a black and white record of an oral narration collected during the 1947 Paraguayan civil war and El Baldio (2013) evokes the hundreds of disappearances over the course of the long Paraguayan dictatorship. He has developed cinema workshops for children living on the streets of Asunción creating with them Ultima Street (2011). His work has been shown at the Berlinale, Clermont-Ferrand, Locarno and many other festivals, winning more than 30 international awards.

Festivals, awards: 
Best Short Film (Orizzonti) - Venice International Film Festival 2016
Director's statement:
In 2013 I went to Curuguaty because I wanted to be with the people there, to listen to them. By ‘be with the people’ I mean that I wanted to connect to them, to sincerely try to get closer to them. We didn’t use any cameras, we only asked them - the women we had been talking to - to allow us to place a microphone near to them. And then we let them talk for as long as they wanted to. Each one of those interviews lasts an hour, two  hours, and sometimes even more because they all contain those long silences that say so much more than any words. It was in that process, and especially during one of the interviews, that we realized we were witnessing a simple but enormous human experience. Unlike films that take an idea or an image as a starting point, this story was born of sound, sound with the strength of a scream, but that of a whispered scream. (Marcelo Martinessi, interviewed for Faro di Roma)