“The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.” – Dorothea Lange
Latin America is a land that despite its struggles on violence, drug trafficking, and corruption, it’s one filled with coreageous, passionate, and persistent people—people that can be anywhere around the world and at home at the same time and who love to share with others how great their cultures are.
That is what we want to do. We are two Hondurans living in Germany who want to represent Latinamerican culture in a country with a growing international community. Our point of start is Honduras and our instrument: films.
Well, we believe films have the power of connection—they connect societies and cultures by reflecting them to others, they connect people to ideas and perspectives by educating an audience, they connect important anectotes to viewers through great storytelling, and they connect to issues to solutions and recognition through by creating conversations.
Therefore, we teamed up with Lighthaus.Berlin—a co-creating space for independent filmmakers in Berlin— present the first edition of the Honduran film screening series “Voces de la Verdad – Honduras through Lenses” in Berlin during each Monday of September, the month of independence of Central America. We aim to connect Honduran filmmakers with the international audience and filmmaking community of Berlin, create a conversation about art and culture, and give a voice to fellow Hondurans that want to raise awareness towards a certain topic.
Laura Bermúdez, Samantha Hernández, Jessica Guifarro, and Katia Lara are among the great filmmakers who have supported this event with their productions. The following four documentaries have been our main focus for the first half of September — four documentaries that depict several perspectives about our society and give a voice fellow Hondurans:
NEGRA SOY – Laura Bermúdez’s short documentary is about three women and a girl who symbolize through their stories the yearnings of the Garífuna community in Punta Gorda, the first Garífuna community in the story of Honduras.
MERLO – Samantha Hernández showcases through her documentary the life of a young talented violinist embracing his alter ego at night and passion for music at daylight through his life in downtown Tegucigalpa.
LA LEONA – Jessica Guifarro’s observational documentary captures the essence of one of the most iconic neighborhoods of the city of Tegucigalpa: the cobblestone and its street, the rain and its channels, the park and its nocturnal solitude, the voice of childhood, the life that takes place, and its people and the things they cling to—this and more provides a unique viewer experience.
BERTA VIVE – Katia Lara’s shocking portrait of the life and death of Berta Cáceres, a beloved environmental activist and indigenous leader who was assassinated in her home by armed intruders at the age of 44 for her role in blocking the construction of the Agua Zarca hydroelectric dam in Honduras. This documentary is so far one of the most scandalous films during the last years due to serious accusations being made towards the Honduran government and other international institutions. Katia Lara is a passionate and talented director whose biggest interest is find justice for Berta Cáceres and demand safety for all activista. She collaborated with us in hope of sharing her message to our international audience — this is her letter towards the Berta Cáceres case and sharing the screen with other talented female producers:
I would like to thank Mario Leonel and his team for this initiative
that allows us to be screening our film in Berlin and denounce the
murder of Berta Cáceres. Her case continues to be in impunity and
its clarification. It is slow and full of arbitrariness, evidencing
the collusion between the state institutions, the private financial
company, and the army to buy impunity and create death businesses
for asset laundering without caring about sacrificing and destroying
the lives of human beings, their territory, and common goods,
something the native people who live in these affected communities
know how to appreciate and care for them.
I enjoy sharing the filmmaking space with young women who are
beginning theircareers on the creation of documentary work and
hope they continueon the same path and become honest filmmakers
that our country urgently demands.
I would like to take this opportunity to denounce the illegitimate
government of Juan Orlando Hernández for trying to influence this
initiative through the Honduran Embassy in Germany by asking the
organizers of this initiative to change the name of the event from
“Voces de la Verdad“ (voices of truth) to “Honduras
Positiva“ (positive Honduras).
I congratulate the team of “Voces de la Verdad – Honduras
through Lenses“ for staying out of the obscene propaganda of this
government and I call on all film and documentary makers to stop
being accomplices of mediocrity and opt for honesty instead, the
only way that would lead them to become great filmmakers.”
– Katia Lara
You can find the German version of this letter here.
* The contents of this letter do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Foreign Minded.
These four documentaries were screened the first half of September and will be screened during the remaining events of this month according to time and resources. For the next expect a shift in topics like action or even perhaps fashion, but also expect to be surprised and impressed.
Follow our event here.