Nostalgia for the Light

Dir. Patricio Guzmán, 90 minutes, 2010, Chile, France and Germany, In Spanish w/ English subtitles

In this elegant personal odyssey, master documentary filmmaker Patricio Guzmán (The Battle of Chile) travels 10,000 feet above sea level to the Atacama Desert, where astronomers gather at the tops of mountains to observe the boundaries of the universe. The Atacama is also a place where the harsh heat of the sun keeps human remains intact, including those of countless victims of Pinochet’s military coup in 1973. So while astronomers examine the most distant and oldest galaxies, at the foot of the mountains, surviving relatives of the disappeared whose bodies were dumped here, search for the remains of their loved ones. Melding the celestial quest of the astronomers and the earthly one of the women, Guzmán crafts a deeply thoughtful and moving meditation on mortality, history and the unknown. Synopsis courtesy of Icarus Films. For more information on this film, please click here.

“…a work of significant moral and intellectual power, a movie that celebrates humankind’s relentless thirst for knowledge or closure…” – Andrew Schenker, Slant Magazine

“For forty years, Patricio Guzmán has had to struggle every inch of the way, with a vivid memory and intimate suffering to reach this work of cosmic serenity, of luminous intelligence, with a sensitivity that could melt stone. At such a level, [Nostalgia for the Light] becomes more than a film. An insane accolade to mankind, a stellar song for the dead, a life lesson.” – Juan Mandelbaum, Le Monde

One of five “Don’t-Miss Movies You Probably Missed” selected by Dennis Lim in The New York Times.