Friday, April 04, 2008

Film: "Tal Como Somos" to premiere at 24th Annual Chicago Film Festival

I already told you about the Puerto Rican thriller "Las Dos Caras de Jano" premiering at the 24th Chicago Latino Film Festival (which begins today).

Turns out there is a second gay-themed festival entry and this time it's a documentary.

According to press materials, "
Tal Como Somos (Just as We Are)" from Juneteenth Productions "shares the realities of living within a culture where daily life means being torn between love as son, brother, father, friend and stigma, or even exclusion, for being different."

The trailer (above) betrays a certain "educational" film tone which is not surprising since the production company also makes educational videos and media such as "Tracking Syphilis: Countdown to Elimination" and "Destructive Force: Hip Hop Imagery in Advertising."

"Tal Como Somos (Just as We Are)" is featured on their page under a link that reads "Latinos Fighting Stigma" which makes me think that the framing of the topic was there before the film was produced.

Without having seen the film and without wanting to take anything from the experiences of those interviewed for the documentary, I will say that - personally - this sort of message framing usually rubs me the wrong way and, in other similar films that I have seen, takes away from the personal experiences portrayed in these films by not letting those experiences speak for themselves.

Then again my friend Dusty Araujo is in it! So I'll give the film some extra points [h/t: LifeLube].

UPDATE: ABC7 Chicago says that there is actually a gay and lesbian track at the film festival including films from Spain (Barcelona), Mexico (Quemar las Naves/Burn the Bridges), Puerto Rico (Manuel & Manuela - see trailer below) and Chicago (Just as We Are/Tal como Somos).

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