The Hour of the Furnaces  

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"This subversive masterpiece -- a shattering indictment of American imperialism in South America -- is a brilliant tour de force of tumultuous images, sophisticated montage, and sledgehammer titles, fused into a passionate onslaught of radical provocation to olt the spectator to a new level of consciousness. Here is a Marxist film that "rocks": a proudly subjective, passionately dogmatic, totally conscious plea for violent revolution." --Film as a Subversive Art


"Un pueblo sin odio no puede triunfar."--"Create Two, Three, Many Vietnams" (1967) by Che Guevara

"El hombre colonizado se libera en y por la violencia"--Frantz Fanon, [from Les Damnés de la Terre "l'homme se libère dans et par la violence" ?

“Se acerca la hora en que los incivilizados educarán a los civilizadores”, --Hernandez Arregui

"Toda nuestra acción es un grito de guerra contra el imperialismo y un clamor por la unidad de los pueblos contra el gran enemigo del género humano: los Estados Unidos de Norte América." -- Che Guevara

"My family name : offended ; my given name : humiliated ; my profession : rebel ; my age : the stone age." --"And the Dogs Were Silent" by Aimé Césaire

--Citations as intertitle cards throughout The Hour of the Furnaces (1968)


"Para que el neocolonialismo se impusiese había que dividir el continente. La unidad de América fue destruida. La diplomacia de Canning promovió la balcanización en el sur. El naciente imperio yanqui lo haría en el centro y en el norte. Las ambiciones coloniales de los dos grandes imperios haría correr la sangre latinoamericana desde México hasta el Río de la Plata."--The Hour of the Furnaces (1968)

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

The Hour of the Furnaces: Notes and Testimonies on Neocolonialism, Violence and Liberation (1968, La hora de los hornos: Notas y testimonios sobre el neocolonialismo, la violencia y la liberación) is a four-hour 1968 documentary film directed by Octavio Getino and Fernando Solanas, a documentary on neo-colonialism and violence in Latin America. 'The paradigm of revolutionary activist cinema', it addresses the politics of the 'Third worldist' films and Latin-American manifesto of the late 1960s.

The title is a reference to a line of poetry by José Marti: "Es la hora de los hornos y no se ha de ver más que la luz".

In the 1960s and 1970s, documentary film was often conceived as a political weapon against neocolonialism and capitalism in general, especially in Latin America. La Hora de los hornos influenced a whole generation of filmmakers.

The work is actually a film essay divided in 14 chapters: ‘Introduction’; 1) ‘The History’; 2) ‘The Country’; 3) ‘Daily Violence’; 4) ‘The Port City’; 5) ‘The Oligarchy’; 6) ‘The System’; 7) ‘Political Violence’; 8) ‘Neoracism’; 9) ‘Dependence’; 10) ‘Cultural Violence’; 11) ‘Models’; 12) ‘Ideological Welfare’; 13) ‘The Choice’.

The first part of the film ends with a three minute still of Che Guevara's postmortem face.

Reception

Writing in the New York Times, critic Vincent Canby described the movie as "a unique film exploration of a nation's soul."

Prizes

  • Mostra Internazionale del Cinema Nuovo (Pesaro, Italy, 1968): Gran Premio de la Crítica
  • Festival Internacional de Manheim (West Germany, 1968): Premio del Publico; Premio FIPRESCI, Cines de Arte y Ensayo; Premio Ecuménico.
  • British Film Institute: Best Foreign Film (1974)
  • Crítica de Los Angeles: One of the Ten Best Films of the 1970s
  • Festival de Mérida (Venezuela, 1968): Best Film Prize
  • Semana de la crítica del Festival de Cannes (1969)

See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "The Hour of the Furnaces" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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