Venezuela has always been a country that attracts the attention of many people. In Indonesia, the country is famous for a number of television movies aired by many private television stations in the 90s. Venezuela is known for its president, Hugo Chavez, who is popular because of his anti-United States statements, a paradox in the international communities which simultaneously acknowledge the hegemony of the United States and are competing to establish relations with the superpower country.
Venezuela, however, is not identical with a dramatic movie, a sexy Miss Universe, or a revolutionary Hugo Chavez only. "These three things are just the stereotype, because we don’t know Venezuela more deeply in all sides," said Drs. Riza Noer Arfani, M.A., Coordinator of the Sociedad Indonesia para America Latina (SIpAL) Faculty of Political and Social Sciences UGM.
Riza said that with the spirit to know Venezuela better, SIpAL in cooperation with the Embassy of Venezuela designed a series of film screenings and discussions which are open to the public entitled SIpAL’s 1st Latin America Film Festival: VENEZUELA THROUGH CINEMA. The event was held over three days, 13-15 April 2011 (sic!), starting at 13:30, in Seminar Room 2nd Floor of UGM Unit I Library.
The first day, Wednesday (13/4) saw a film entitled Tocar y Luchar (2006, Alberto Avelo), a documentary about the most important social project in the last decade. This film tells the story of the dream of more than 200 children and adolescents in Venezuela and other Latin American countries to play music.
On Thursday (14/4) the movie South of the Border (2008, Oliver Stone) was run, which is a film about the revolution which is happening in Latin America. This film tells the story of Oliver Stone's journey around five countries in South America to study political and social movement occuring there, proving the US mass media’s misperception of these countries.
Finally, on Friday (15/4), Miranda Regresa (2007, Luis Alberto Lamata) was played, a film about Francisco de Miranda, Venezuelan freedom fighter whose life was an inspiration for many people in Venezuela until today.