Memories of Underdevelopment 1968
A very dry title for an absolutely tremendous film from 1968 by the Cuban director Tomas Gutierrez Alea. This transfixing movie, with its mix of freewheeling dialogue scenes, still photo images and documentary footage, conjures up the uncertain mood of Havana just after the revolution. It is something to put alongside the Soviet classic Soy Cuba from 1964, and in fact stars a Cuban actor from that film, Sergio Corrieri gives an outstanding performance as a wealthy idler who long ago allowed his artistic aspirations to wilt. When the Batista regime falls, his family, friends and pampered wife all flee to Miami but for reasons that he cannot quite explain, Sergio stays in the new Cuba, drifting, yet weirdly exhilarated and liberated. He becomes entangled in an messy affair with a 17-year-old, and ponders the fact that he has become like a decadent plant, with huge leaves and no fruit. Cuba, he now sees, has been "underdeveloped" according to the Marxist analysis, and his tragedy is that he can only dimly understand what part he has played in this, and has no clue as to how his own personal and spiritual underdevelopment might be remedied. And yet it is his viewpoint - alienated, yet shrewd and somehow also innocent - that allows us to see the reality of Cuban life, without dogmatism or wishful thinking. The effect is fascinating. This is a must-see.

Director: Tomas Gutierrez Alea
Cast: Sergio Corrieri, Daisy Granados, Eslinda Nunez
Country: Cuba
Genre: Drama

BD50 | 1080p AVC | 01:38:53 | 43.6 Gb + 3% rec
Language: Espanol
Subtitles: English

Extras:
• Interviews with film critics B. Ruby Rich and Jose Antonio Evora (18:54)
• Interview with novelist and screenwriter Edmundo Desnoes (15:56)
• "Titon: From Havana to 'Guantanamera'" 2008 feature-length documentary on director Tomas Gutierrez Alea’s life and career (96:34)
• 1989 Audio Interview segment with Gutierrez Alea (11:30)
• Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' Visual History Collection 2017 interview segments:
-- actor Daisy Granados (9:37)
-- editor Nelson Rodriguez (16:25)
• Trailer (2:49)

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