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Patricio Guzmán: The Watchful Eye

Screening of Patricio Guzmán's La batalla de Chile: El poder popular (The Battle of Chile, Part 3: The Power of the People) & Chile, la memoria obstinada (Chile, Obstinate Memory). Part of the film series showcasing several of the acclaimed Chilean documentarian's films.

Saturday, April 30, 2011
7:30 PM
Billy Wilder Theater
Hammer Museum
10899 Wilshire Blvd
Los Angeles, 90025

“The only eternal lesson to be had is to study the past, so that we won’t repeat it.”— Patricio Guzmán.

In a remarkable 40-year career, Chilean filmmaker Patricio Guzmán has crafted a unique legacy among documentarians: cataloguing the cataclysmic modern events of his country in a body of work not only timely, but timeless. Influenced early on by the non-fiction work of Chris Marker, Frédéric Rossif and Louis Malle, Guzmán began his career in 1971, documenting the sweeping social and economic reforms enacted by Chile’s then-president, Salvador Allende, Latin America’s first democratically elected socialist head of state. In 1973, Allende’s government was brought down in a bloody coup that brought General Augusto Pinochet to power and Guzmán was forced to leave Chile for Europe where he completed The Battle of Chile, Parts 1-3 (1975-1979), a searing account of the Allende government’s final year. Guzmán has returned to the events of 1973 and their aftermath several times throughout his career while also expanding his field of inquiry to explore the very natures of cinema, history and memory. 

About the Films:

THE BATTLE OF CHILE, PART 3: THE POWER OF THE PEOPLE (La batalla de Chile: El poder popular)(1979)

The final part of Guzmán’s verite triptych may also be its most essential. Completed a year after the first two segments, Part Three: The Power of the People shifts focus from the forces working against Allende to the people who supported his vision for a new Chile. Guzmán captures the faith and commitment of students, farmers and the working classes to defend Allende’s social and economic reforms as they rally in the streets and organize neighborhood militias to counter rightist thugs. Though their efforts were ultimately doomed, Guzmán never surrenders to cynicism or despair, choosing instead to celebrate the spirit of justice that motivated Allende’s supporters regardless of the cost. 78 Minutes | In Spanish with English Subtitles


CHILE, OBSTINATE MEMORY (Chile, la memoria obstinada) (1997)

Guzmán has spent his career capturing powerful images but in Chile, Obstinate Memory he also steps back to explore the complex and contradictory power of images. One of his most thematically significant films, it is also a deeply personal account of Guzmán’s return to his native country in 1997, after the official government ban on The Battle of Chile was lifted. In living rooms and classrooms, Guzmán screens the film for those who lived through the 1973 coup and those too young at the time to remember it. As they watch, we witness the flood of recollections and emotions it triggers in young and old alike, every frame validating a long suppressed truth and intensifying the loss of a history denied. 58 Minutes | In Spanish with English Subtitles


To purchase tickets, please visit (Filmforum members receive a $1 discount off the regular ticket price at the theater box office) Parking Information: Parking is available in the lot under the theater. Enter from Westwood Blvd., just north of Wilshire. Parking for people with disabilities is provided on levels P1 and P3. After 6pm: $3.00 flat rate. Before 6pm: $3.00 for first 3 hours with Museum validation and $1.50 per 20 minutes thereafter, maximum $12 per day. To obtain validation stamp show your ticket stub at the security desk in the Wilshire Lobby.

Cost : Free to UCLA students with valid ID; General Admission: $10

Sponsor(s): Latin American Institute, Center for Argentina, Chile and the Southern Cone, Film and Television Archive, Spanish and Portuguese, Los Angeles Filmforum

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