Days in Guadalajara: Photo Diary

By ROBERT KOEHLER

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Guadalajara’s festival sign tells visitors that they’ve arrived….at the festival hotel, Fiesta Americana.

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Guadalajara’s Market space before the crowds hit, when I was the only journalist roaming around.

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The festival banner, but does anyone really see it? Note the “HD” logo at the bottom…this is the festival hotel for visiting journalists, the Hotel Diana, five blocks from the cinemas.

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Critics rarely get to sleep in festival hotel beds like this….

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Guadalajara considers itself a better city for contemporary art than Mexico City, and here’s evidence…note the large banner to the left, on the side of one of the University of Guadalajara’s downtown buildings.

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Search as I might, I never discovered the name of the artist of this half-insect, half-human public sculpture near the University of Guadalajara…

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Guadalajara’s Cineforo is the university cinematheque, with a descending staircase entrance like the original Cinematheque Francaise.

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In the Cineforo, a Cuban poster of Stanley Kubrick’s The Killing, as part of a gallery show of original Cuban film poster art honoring ICAIC, Cuba’s state cinema agency….no racetrack images, but the evil American dollar…

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In the ICAIC poster show, one for The Last Supper, by Cuba’s great, late Tomas Gutierrez Alea.

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In a Cuban cinema exhibit, the Soviets can never be far behind….and so it is in the Cineforo ICAIC show, with a Soviet film projector…..but does it work?

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At the Guadalajara market, one-sheets of recent good and bad films…..guess which are good, which are bad (hint: Miguel Gomes’ Aquele Querido Mes de Agosto is the masterpiece in the group)….both the Gomes and Tony Manero are in the international competition slates of Guadalajara and BAFICI…..coincidence?

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Santa Barbara festival’s Cinemedia artistic director and now fully tenured UCSB professor, Cristina Venegas, happy she’s survived another press/industry screening.

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In the Hotel Americana lobby, Philippe Grandrieux’s producer Catherine Jacques, programmer/filmmaker Michel Lipkes, and director Grandrieux, celebrating after another good screening in Guadalajara…apologies for the blurry picture, only slightly in homage to Grandrieux’s own deliberately blurry image-making…..

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Eugenio Polgovsky, pleased after a large turnout and long Q and A for his superb non-fiction film, Los Herederos, which has really touched a chord among Mexicans.

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They may be a bit blurry, but these really are (left to right) Argentine critic Roger Koza, American critic and maker of the new For the Love of Movies, Gerald Peary, Israeli critic Dan Fainaru and Facets’ Milos Stehlik.

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Dan Fainaru and Roger Koza over breakfast and enduring the (off-camera) out-of-tune live piano, at Guadalajara’s Hotel Diana…..note Roger’s Cinema Scope magazine t-shirt “VOTE FOR PEDRO (PEDRO COSTA THAT IS)”.

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The semi-official Guadalajara festival elephant, outside of Centro Magno, site of the main festival cinemas.

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Guadalajara’s market, full of negotiations….the Catalans, take note, were out in force.

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Emir Kusturica flakes out in Guadalajara….this is a notice of a sudden, unexplained cancellation of his press conference.

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