Film and Videos

Some of the films we recommend:

“Diplomacy Derailed” and “Failure Compounded,” two short films by investigative journalist Tracey Eaton (about 10 min each)

view or download the films For over a half-century, U.S. foreign policy toward Cuba has been in single-minded pursuit of one goal: ending the Castro government, and replacing Cuba’s system with one based on the political principles and free market preferences of the United States. The first film talks about how the policy hasn't worked, and the second dives into the lengths to which our government goes to carry out a regime-change motivated policy by creating programs through USAID. Nov, 2013

Bloqueo

watch the film or order a copy from IFCO
This 2005 (but still relevant) documentary features voices from the streets of Havana and the Cuban countryside, "Bloqueo" (or blockade) lets Cubans speak for themselves about how they have been affected by the blockade, and what it means to live in Cuba. The 45-minute documentary also features analysis from activists traveling with the Pastors for Peace Caravan—an annual journey calling attention to this controversial policy.
"Bloqueo" looks at the successes that have made Cuba a model in healthcare, environmental stewardship, and other arenas that forge an alternative, and ultimately more sustainable, system. 2004, 45min., English and Spanish with English subtitles. 2005

Eyes on the Rainbow website 2013

"Eyes of the Rainbow" deals with the life of Assata Shakur, the Black Panther and Black Liberation Army leader who escaped from prison and was given political asylum in Cuba, where she has lived for close to 15 years. In it we visit with Assata in Havana and she tells us about her history and her life in Cuba. This film is also about Assata's AfroCuban context, including the Yoruba Orisha Oya, goddess of the ancestors, of war, of the cemetery and of the rainbow. Gloria Rolando on "Eyes of the Rainbow":

"In the struggle of the African American people, many women's voices in the past and the present have always called for social justice, women who throughout the years have shown integrity and firmness in their principles. For this reason, "The Eyes of the Rainbow" is dedicated to all women who struggle for a better world.

Power of Community. website

When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1990, Cuba's economy went into a tailspin. With imports of oil cut by more than half – and food by 80 percent – people were desperate. This film tells of the hardships and struggles as well as the community and creativity of the Cuban people during this difficult time. Cubans share how they transitioned from a highly mechanized, industrial agricultural system to one using organic methods of farming and local, urban gardens. It is an unusual look into the Cuban culture during this economic crisis, which they call "The Special Period." The film opens with a short history of Peak Oil, a term for the time in our history when world oil production will reach its all-time peak and begin to decline forever. Cuba, the only country that has faced such a crisis – the massive reduction of fossil fuels – is an example of options and hope. 2006

Maestra website

It was the year that each Cuban who knew how to read and write would teach one who didn't. "The Cuban Literacy Campaign is an important but little-known chapter in history. Catherine Murphy has created a project with rare and intimate access to this history. Her documentary MAESTRA brings together moving interviews with living witnesses, beautiful archival footage, and Catherine's compelling storytelling." Howard Zinn 2012

Will the Real Terrorist Please Stand Up? website

This film chronicles half a century of hostile US-Cuba relations by telling the story of the "Cuban Five", intelligence agents sent to penetrate Cuban exile terrorist groups in Miami and now serving long prison sentences (one was recently release after serving 13 years). The film highlights de4cades of assassinations and sabotage at first backed, then ignored by the very government that launched a "war on terrorism". In the film, viewers see leading terrorists, now in their 80s, recounting their deeds, and Cuban state security officials explaining why they infiltrated agents into violent Miami exile groups.

The film, featuring Danny Glover and 84 year old Fidel Castor in key scenes, raises and tries to answer the question: what did Cuba do to deserve such hostile treatment? It traces key events from the Bay of Pigs and Cuban Missile Crisis, through multiple assassination attempts on Fidel Castro's life. This documentary reveals a story of violence that also echoed on the streets of Washington DC, New York and especially Miami where Cuban-American critics of the bombers and shooters also wound up assassinated. 2011

“Telón de agua,/Curtain of Water” website

(an allusion to the legendary Iron Curtain that isolated the ex-Soviet communist states), is photographer Joe Guerriero’s personal quest to make sense of the United States’ trade embargo on Cuba. After several photographic trips to the island nation, during which he developed a deep connection to the people he met, Guerriero felt the need to understand this policy, still in force 53 years after the Cuban revolution. The embargo, known in Cuba as the “bloqueo,” or blockade, is seen by some as an outdated act of reprisal, and by others as a necessary reaction to signal the U.S. rejection of the revolutionary government’s Marxist ideology. In this documentary, Guerriero asks about the reasons for the embargo and tries to identify the opposing interests of the two countries, while also showing its effects on the Cuban people. He presents conversations with Cuban exiles and American activists in the U.S. and personal reflections of everyday Cubans caught in a situation of acute material and cultural privation, to shed light on the political and the human side of this conflict. 2013.


Salud website

Find out what puts Cuba on the map in the quest for global health …
A timely examination of human values and the health issues that affect us all, ¡Salud! looks at the curious case of Cuba, a cash-strapped country with what the BBC calls ‘one of the world’s best health systems.’ From the shores of Africa to the Americas, !Salud!hits the road with some of the 28,000 Cuban health professionals serving in 68 countries, and explores the hearts and minds of international medical students in Cuba -- now numbering 30,000, including nearly 100 from the USA. Their stories plus testimony from experts around the world bring home the competing agendas that mark the battle for global health—and the complex realities confronting the movement to make healthcare everyone’s birth right. read the rest 2008