Neighboring Scenes series returns to Lincoln Center


In just two weeks, the third annual Neighboring Scenes returns to The Film Society of Lincoln Center in New York City. The five-day event is a showcase of Latin America cinema and will feature 14 films (10 are celebrating their U.S. premiere).

“We are opening Neighboring Scenes with the U.S. premiere of Alanis by Anahí Berneri, the fifth feature by a remarkable director from Argentina who became the second female filmmaker to ever win Best Director at the San Sebastian Film Festival,” said curator Cecilia Barrionuevo. “The main character is portrayed by Sofía Gala Castigione, who was also awarded Best Actress in the Spanish film festival.” Berneri will be available for a Q&A after the 82-minute film.

The Neighboring Scenes series also includes Beauties of the Night, the debut feature by director María José Cuevas. “It is an engrossing and captivating portrait of some of Mexico’s most famous showgirls from the late 70s and the 80s, who have been battling oblivion after the decline of the cabaret heyday,” said Barrionuevo. Beauties of the Night is a 91-minute feature that will be making its New York debut.

Tiziana Panizza’s Solitary Land, winner of the top awards at the Valdivia Film Festival also debuts. “It’s a provocative mediation and deconstruction on the colonial legacy of Easter Island,” said Barrionuevo. The Chilean film is 107 minutes and is making its United States premiere.

Unfortunately, out of the 14 films in this year’s series, these are the only three films that are directed by women, all of which are features. This is a decline from last year’s series, which showcased 15 films, eight of which were represented by women, including a feature and several shorts. The women whose films were represented last year included Andrea Testa for The Long Night of Francisco Sanctis, a 78-minute Spanish film with English subtitles.

There was no response when asked what was being done to increase the number of women filmmakers in the series.

Tickets for Neighboring Scenes, in collaboration with Cinema Tropical, are already on sale. Prices are $15; $12 for students, seniors (62+), and Cinema Tropical subscribers; and $10 for Film Society members.

In addition to these films, the series will also include the world premiere of a new restoration of the 1998 film Pizza, Beer, and Cigarettes, which celebrates its 20th anniversary. This film, which was directed by Bruno Stagnaro and Adrián Caetano, follows a pair of less than talented thieves and launched the New Argentine Cinema movement and has continued inspiring Latin American filmmakers for generations.

Other highlights in this year’s lineup include such Niles Atallah’s formally daring Rey, which won the Special Jury Prize at Rotterdam; Santiago Mitre’s political thriller The Summit, an Un Certain Regard selection from Cannes, featuring an impressive international cast; and Fellipe Barbosa’s around-the-world travelogue Gabriel and the Mountain, a two-time prizewinner at Cannes Critics’ Week.

The festival also features documentaries about Mexican fishermen, adaptations of Dostoevsky (António, One, Two, Three) and Hans Christian Andersen (The Little Match Girl); and a number of debut features including visual artist Adrián Villar Rojas’s The Theater of Disappearance, a cinematic reimagining of his acclaimed Met rooftop installation.

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit the Film Society at Lincoln Center’s website,

© Lisa Iannucci (2/19/18) FF2 Media

Featured Photo: Beauties of the Night by María José Cuevas

Middle Photo: Alanis by Anahí Berneri

Bottom Photo: Solitary Land by Tiziana Panizza

Photo Credits: Film Society of Lincoln Center

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