EXILE. THE BURDEN OF MEMORY
Director: Leutén Rojas
Canada, 2019 | English and Spanish with English subtitles |101 min
Viewing available ACROSS CANADA from August 27 – September 6
Preceded by the short film OUR HOME (Dir. Andy Alvarez)
Live stream Q&A with directors: TBA
EXILE. THE BURDEN OF MEMORY consists of testimonies by Chilean exiles and their families who arrived in Canada in the mid-1970s and their children and relatives who stayed in Chile. Following a brief exposé on the 1973 military coup, each protagonist recalls what happened to them on September 11, the impact of exile on their lives and its meaning, their re-encounters with family, and their reflections on their personal experiences as Canadians of Chilean origin. Produced, directed, written and edited by Ottawa director Leutén Rojas, this documentary was shot on location in Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa and Santiago de Chile by Toronto director of photography Hernán Morris. Includes a music score by Toronto composer and songwriter Marcelo Puente.
A moving, grassroots documentary that seeks to do the important work of preserving the oral testimonies of the Chilean political exiles of the 1970s—one of the first Latin American communities to establish multi-generational roots across Canada.
“This documentary is a very personal project that enabled me during the production process to explore, depict and comment on exile at the personal level and place the personal experience of exile in the wider context of collective memory.” -Leutén Rojas
EXILIO. THE BURDEN OF MEMORY (2019) consiste en testimonios de exiliados chilenos y sus familias que llegaron a Canadá a mediados de la década de 1970 y sus hijos y familiares que se quedaron en Chile. Luego de una breve exposición sobre el golpe militar de 1973, cada protagonista recuerda lo que les sucedió el 11 de septiembre, el impacto del exilio en sus vidas y su significado, sus reencuentros con la familia y la reflexión sobre sus experiencias personales como canadienses de origen chileno. Producido, dirigido, escrito y editado por el director de Ottawa, Leutén Rojas, este documental fue filmado en Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa y Santiago de Chile por el director de fotografía de Toronto Hernán Morris. Incluye una partitura musical del compositor y compositor de Toronto Marcelo Puente.
Born in Santiago (Chile), Leutén Rojas began working in film at a young age as the production manager of Tres Tristes Tigres (Three Sad Tigers, Raul Ruiz, 1967.) Employed at the state-funded Chile Films S.A. in various capacities, including film camera assistant, cinematographer, producer and director of documentary films and videos (1969-1973). Arrived to Toronto, via Honduras, as a Chilean exile in January of 1975 and has since been an independent film and video producer, director, writer and cinematographer of numerous documentaries. Among those are To Be Ukranian and House Full of History (1977), Canadian Experience (1979), Nicaragua: the Dream of Sandino (1982), P’a ayudarle a mi mama (Just to Help my Mom, 2000-2007). Exile. The Burden of Memory is his latest work. It incorporates excerpts from his Chilean-themed documentaries: I Remember Too (1975), From the Strings of My Guitar (1982) and The Secret (1986-1987).