Tuesday, 9 June 2009

María Luisa Bemberg: online resources

Miss Mary, (María Luisa Bemberg, 1986) starring Julie Christie, Nacha Guevara, Eduardo Pavlovsky, and Luisina Brando.

Following up my last blog entry on theories of women's film authorship, I have just posted a pre-publication version of a chapter on the early films of Argentine film director María Luisa Bemberg that I finally published in An Argentine Passion: The Films of María Luisa Bemberg edited by John King, Sheila Whittaker and Rosa Bosch (London: Verso, 2000).

Bemberg was an early favourite director of mine; I loved teaching about her films which were produced against the kind of political and economic backdrop that would dissuade (and did dissuade) many from attempting to make any kind of cinema, let alone the kind of feminist cinema that Bemberg launched herself into making later in life, at the still tender age of 58. I learned an awful lot about filmmaking just by studying her films, as well as the work of other filmmakers in whose films she had professed an interest (including, especially, Ingmar Bergman, Leopoldo Torre Nilsson). In turn, of course, Bemberg has been an important influence on a number of young filmmakers, most notably another favourite of mine, Lucrecia Martel (see HERE). Martel's films have been produced by Bemberg's legendary producer Lita Stantic.

My chapter looks in quite a lot of detail at her decision to become a director following frustrations with the work of other filmmakers who directed her scripts. As she declared in 1989, "I had to stand behind a camera in order to be true to my own script and to unravel the common thread to all my transgressing characters".

In honour of Bemberg and her films, below is a list of high-quality and freely-accessible online studies of her work:

In English:
In Spanish:

In Italian:

Camila (María Luisa Bemberg, 1984) starring Susú Pecoraro , Imanol Arias, and Héctor Alterio

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