VLAFF offers film with director Q-and-A
By Cheryl Minns, Arts Editor
The 12th annual Vancouver Latin American Film Festival (VLAFF) is now playing at various theatres and post-secondary campuses across the Greater Vancouver area, including Douglas College’s New Westminster campus. Students, faculty, and members of the community are invited to a free screening of the Chilean drama, Illiterate in lecture theatre 2201 at 2:30 p.m. on September 4.
“The film is called Illiterate and it says there are many ways of being illiterate in this world. For a university crowd to reflect on what is literacy, how do we learn, how do we teach—those are themes that are present in the film,” said Ruth Mandujano-Lopez, a Modern Languages instructor at Douglas College.
“It’s a good opportunity for the public to open their minds to other stories that are different and the same because we are all humans and we share so many things,” she said.
Illiterate director Moisés Sepúlveda will be at the screening to present the film and take questions from the audience. Last year’s screening of Nothing More attracted about a hundred guests and concluded with a 30-minute discussion with the director, Juan Carlos Cremata Malberti.
“Last year, we started hosting the director as well, and I think that’s an interesting extra element because it’s not only watching the film but having that chance to speak with the director who made the film,” Mandujano-Lopez said.
Mandujano-Lopez initiated the VLAFF film screening after she invited the VLAFF director, Christian Sida-Valenzuela, to speak to her class and he brought a short film as part of his presentation.
“He presented it to the class and then he discussed it. People were really excited about it. That’s when I said, ‘Wait a minute. There’s a lot of potential here.’ I started asking him for a couple of films to show in my own classes and then we said, ‘Why don’t we just make it more formal and be part of the festival?’”
That was how, three years ago, the Douglas College free VLAFF screening was created with financial support from the Language, Literature, and Performing Arts department. This makes Douglas College one of only three post-secondary institutions involved in showing VLAFF screenings, alongside Simon Fraser University and the University of British Columbia.
For those interested in attending other screenings at this year’s VLAFF, festival director Sida-Valenzuela recommends the Argentinean comedy Lion’s Heart (September 6) and the Uruguayan animation AninA (September 7). More information about the films and festival tickets is available at vlaff.org