In Como De la Gana – shot during Pinochet’s dictatorship – Agüero asked his colleagues about what they were filming and whom they made their work for. Thirty years later, now with Chile under a democratic rule, the question has changed to “What is the essence of cinema?” This time, young Chilean filmmakers (and a young female director from Iran) are the ones who answer Agüero’s question – somewhat inexactly, which is quite expected since they are in the middle of their own shootings; and even Agüero himself gets around their answers in a playful way. Here comes a first clue: the ontology of cinema is at the mercy of time. The quoted analogic images extracted from No olvidar are not quite the same as those couple of shots taken in tape video by the director in Leningrad – and are even further away from those which appear in this digital film. The movie ends with a joke – a characteristic in this director – which is also an indirect quote from the great Raul Ruiz’s Cofralandes. “The cinematic element is what I’m thinking.” This paradoxical answer perpetuates the enigma and places it off screen. However, we don’t need to use telepathy to read the answer that dwells inside Agüero’s mind. (Roger Koza, Viennale)
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