During the summer months the activities of Treaty of Utrecht just continue. So it happened that on a warm Monday night 40 people came to the cinema to see the movie “Little Voices” in the series ”Checkpoint Cinema”, a collaboration between Treaty of Utrecht, IKV Pax Christi and the cinema. For this special viewing the Latin American Film Festival joined us in organizing. Why? Because the film “Little Voices” touches on many things all organizations feel connected with: depiciting the life of ordinary citizens in a conflict torn country.
As you might well know Colombia lived through awful decennia with Marxist rebels turned rebels searching for economic profits, paramilitairy groups defending interests of seated classes, and an army which couldn’t protect citizens. For years Colombia figured amongst the most dangerous countries in the world. See some old articles to refresh your memory here and here. This might illustrate right away why an organization as IKV Pax Christi continues to work in Colombia for over 14 years already. See a bit of info here.
The film “Little Voices”, co funded by the Dutch Jan Vrijman Funds, shows the realities of four young children in Colombia. Director Juan Eduardo Carillo based his animated movie on the drawings of children in Colombia. See an earlier short film by him here, and watch the trailer here, or feel lucky and see parts of the movie here.
Critics have heralded the movie because it doesn’t choose sides in the various conflicts in CVolombia, but just shows how kids see their surroundings. For informed audiences there are plenty of little hints to put the film in an framework, for non informed audiences the omnipresence of violence is shocking to see. Before and after the viewing of the movie IKV Pax Christi’s Marianne Moor introduced the audiences to the complex political and social situation in Colombia, and reminded us that not everything in Colombia is moving in the right directions. Yes, there is less outspoken violence, yes, the army is in control of the cities and main roads again, but what happens far from the cities remains unbeknownst to even the people living in Colombia’s cities, let alone audiences in Europe or elsewhere. She stressed the importance of foreign interest in and engagement with the regular citizens of Colombia to help keeping the Colombian authorities under pressure not to forget all four corners of their country. This link shows what IKV Pax Christi’s work is like in Colombia, and here we find an article on recent developments in Colombia.
An artist who touched on the violent character of the Colombian society is the Argentina born Miguel Angel Rios. A year ago, the Amsterdam based Prince Claus Funds presented one of his installations, Mecha, in their gallery. This movie plays with images of an innocent game, but distorts the images into a warscene. The movie “Little Voices” just does it the other way around: innocent children show their world, and their view is so childish we are confronted with the distorted reality in a way a documentary could not show us.