Friday, September 12, 2014


Press Release

Icaro New York
9 - 12 September 2014

Photo courtesy of Icaro New York

Instituto Cervantes NY, Havana Film Festival NY and Casa Comal Guatemala Welcome the 3rd Annual Icaro Central American Film Festival New York, September 9-12, 2014 

20th Anniversary Celebration of El silencio de Neto, directed by Luis Argueta. First Guatemalean film ever made 

All screenings are Free of Charge and English subtitled 

NEW YORK - For third consecutive year, filmgoers have the opportunity to see the award winners of the most relevant film festival in Central America. From September 9-12, New Yorkers can watch 11 films that varied in genre, country and formats; documentaries, narrative and animation films from Costa Rica, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, El Salvador and Guatemala have been shown at Instituto Cervantes New York (211 East 49th Street, bet 2 & 3 Aves). Screenings are open and free of charge. All foreign films are subtitled in English. 

Icaro New York opened on Tuesday September 9 at 6pm, with two Costa Rican award winning films: Irene directed by Alexandra Latishev and Puerto Padre, directed by Gustavo Fallas. Actress Adriana Alvarez attended the screening. The festival also celebrates the 20th Anniversary of El Silencio de Neto (Neto’s Silence), the remarkable film from NY-based director Luis Argueta and first feature film ever made in Guatemala. Through the eyes of young Neto, the viewer is given an insider's look at the diverse people of Guatemala, and the historical events in the mid-1950's, including a coup, that have shaped their destiny. Mr. Argueta was in hand to present the movie and participate in a Q&A at the end. 

Photo courtesy of Icaro New York

About the festival, Diana Vargas, director of Icaro New York says: “Held annually in Guatemala, Icaro Film Festival has given, in the past 17 years, the opportunity to young and emerging filmmakers from the 7 countries that are part of the Central American region to tell their own stories, built their own audiences and in the process, to collect awards around the world. Now those stories come to New York.” 

In the ICARO Film Festival, more than 25 countries participated along with a significant number of international guests; the ICARO Film Festival is replicated locally in each Central American country. Its screenings are distributed in festivals and cultural centers all around the world. Its most important achievement is to have stimulated the Central American audiovisual production and the appreciation for their own stories in the public and to position the production on an international level. 

Photo courtesy of Icaro New York

Friday September 12
5:00 pm 
Ruta de Luna 
Juan Sebastián Jácome / Panama / Fiction / 80min. / 2012
Tito, an introverted bowling enthusiast, is suddenly forced to travel from his native country, Panama, to San José in Costa Rica, to look after his ill father, César, a peculiar and stubborn character, who has lived his whole life as he pleased but has now developed a heart disease. Tito’s only wish is to go back to Panama as soon as possible to be able to participate in a Bowling Tournament. César decides to go with him. During their trip back in César’s old but still good car, they’ll go through the reasons why they remained apart for so long. 

Friday September 12
6:45 pm
20th Anniversary Celebration: El silencio de Neto / Neto’s Silence 
Luis Argueta / Guatemala / Fiction / 105min. / 1994
The Silence of Neto, the strong directorial debut by Luis Argueta, is also the first feature film ever made in Guatemala. It tells the poignant story of a Guatemalan boy coming of age at a crucial moment in his country’s history. In 1954, the year Neto turns eleven; a CIA-sponsored invasion overthrows the democratically elected government of his country. Through the eyes of young Neto, the viewer is given an insider's look at the diverse people of Guatemala, and the historical events in the mid-1950's, including a coup, that have shaped their destiny.
*Director Luis Argueta present for Q&A.
Reception to follow

Photo courtesy of Icaro New York

Previous days:

Tuesday September 9
6:00 pm
Alexandra Latishev / Costa Rica / Fiction / 28 min. / 2013
*Best Short Film at Icaro Film Festival 2013
Irene, a 23-year-old single mother, makes photocopies all day long. She lives with her 7- year-old son, Santiago and her mother, a very conservative woman. Sporadically, Irene has sex with her co-worker Marco, although the sex is not interesting. One day, she meets Diego and they go on a date. Irene gets drunk; frustrated she questions her sexuality and her role as a mother.

Followed by
Puerto Padre 
Gustavo Fallas / Costa Rica / Fiction / 90min. / 2013
NY Premiere
*Best Actress and Best Editing Icaro Film Festival 2013
As a teenage orphan from Chira Island searches for his godfather on the mainland, his innocent memory of childhood is gradually replaced by an unsettling reality upon learning the truth about his origins. 
*Actress Adriana Alvarez present for Q&A. 
Reception to follow 

Wednesday September 10
5:00 pm 
El Tigre y el Venado 
Sergio Sibrián / El Salvador / Documentary / 45min. / 2013
This story shows the last grandfather who knows how to play the indigenous flute called “Pito Carrizo” that accompanies the native dance “El tigre y el venado” (The Tiger and The Deer). While he teaches the melodies to a young man to make sure we don’t forget the tradition, he reveals the details about the massacre of indigenous people of 1932 in El Salvador, from which he is a survivor. The young man learns and next to his grandfather plays the music while the others dance. 

Followed by 
Lih Wina Nicaragua 
Shirlene Green Newball / Nicaragua / Documentary / 32min. / 2012
*Best Short Documentary
Lih Wina, is a one-way ticket for the green turtles of the Caribbean; from the moment they are captured in the biological reserve on the Miskito Cays until their death in the slaughter houses of Bilwi. In the north of Nicaragua, in the Atlantic region, it is traditional to eat the green turtle meat. The communities of the indigenous territory Tawira do so by ancestral and spiritual traditions, but the massive marketing and absence of viable economic alternatives of livelihood has made of this tradition a cavalry and a butchery of a species in danger of extinction. 

Wednesday September 10
6:30 pm
Reinas / Majesty 
Ana Endara Mislov / Panama / Documentary / 65min. / 2013
A pre-school girl, a supermarket cashier and a woman living in a home for the elderly have something in common: they all want to be queens. They don’t want to win a beauty pageant; “queen ceremonies” are a different thing. In Panama, a country with no official monarchy but full of queens, there is a crown for anyone who dreams about it. 

Photo courtesy of Icaro New York

Wednesday September 10
7:45 pm 
Justicia para mi hermana / Justice for my Sister 
Kimberly Bautista / Guatemala-U.S. / Documetary / 70min. / 2013
*Best Documentary
Adela, 27, left home for work one day and never returned. Her ex-boyfriend beat her until she was unrecognizable and left her at the side of the road. Her story is all too familiar in Guatemala, where 6,000 women have been murdered in the last decade. Only 2% of those killers have been sentenced. Adela's sister Rebeca, 34, is determined to see that Adela's killer is held accountable. She makes tortillas at home and sells them in order to raise her five children, as well as the three children Adela left behind. Completely transformed by her struggle, Rebeca emerges as a feminist leader in her rural community with a message for others: justice is possible.
*Director Kimberly Bautista present for Q&A. 

Thursday September 11
5:00 pm
Diego Rivera / Honduras / Fiction / 6min. / 2013
This is the story of an embalmer, who goes to a church to confess his sins after preparing the body of his true love. 

Followed by 
El Xendra 
Juan Carlos Fanconi / Honduras / 100min. / 2012
“El Xendra” tells the story of four Central American scientists that have the mission of investigating a paranormal event that occurred in Honduras after the supposed end of the world that was to take place on the 21st of December 2012. One of the scientists receives a message from beings of another world, which leads them to search for an extraterrestrial city, hidden under the jungle of that region, which in this case is the mythical White City. Based on facts about contacting extraterrestrials that were received by two Peruvians, Sixto Paz and Ricardo González. 

Thursday September 11
6:45 pm 
Fe / Faith 
Alejo Crisóstomo / Guatemala / Fiction / 70min. / 2012 
An evangelical priest is forced to question the true reason why God has placed him on earth. With this in mind, the priest is invited to give a religious service in the state prison of Guatemala City, where he meets Beto, a young fisherman accused of killing a thirteen-year-old girl. The priest sees in Beto a chance to redeem himself and once Beto is released from prison, the priest decides to help him. The priest gives Beto a job and shelter in the church, causing his family and congregation to turn against him. Convinced of Beto's innocence and affirmed only in his faith, the priest decides to help him at all costs. Until one day, an unexpected crime occurs in the surroundings of the church. 

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