by Lauren Pringle, contributing blogger
Imagine the setting; a small town in the province of Buenos Aires, 20,000 inhabitants, fields surrounding the town that roll on for days, and the local town cinema, which let’s just say is not used to its full potential. A wonderful and blossoming story is growing out of this quiet town and even quieter cinema. It is a Saturday night and the cinema is fully booked. All of the spectators are anxiously waiting to see the preview of the latest work “Destiny” by Felipe “Coco” Gutierrez (76) who is about to preview his fourth film.
“Coco” is a pensioner and his story was made famous on a national level by his son, Ariel who sent his work and story to the national press, as evidenced by this article in Argentina’s most read newspaper http://www.clarin.com/sociedad/titulo_0_700130041.html . He had always has an interest in acting and film and in his 70’s he brought a super 8 camera to film for his children.
Using simple methods, Coco often uses what he has got. He films with friends, neighbours and local people and locations in the town. Speaking to the local school director, who has been involved in one of Coco’s films, she explains, “Coco is a man, just have to know how to handle. He corrects you but also gives you a lot of freedom to work with”.
Coco’s directing debut was with a film called “The Bad Light” which was based on a story from his sister, Beba. Shorty after his second feature was called “A history of the 40s” and “The Inheritance”. His latest work “Destiny” is a tragic story set in an estancia, which is also an adapted story written by his sister. So where exactly does Coco’s inspiration come from? Coco comments about his “love for Italian cinema. Francis Ford Coppola is a favourite of mine and I believe in cinema there are two geniuses, Charlie Chaplin and Roberto Gomez Bolanos”.
“Destiny” overall is a well thought out film, although there are some technical details with regards to continuity, there are also well thought out and sensitive scenes. Coco explains how they had to try and recreate a storm, “we had everything prepared when suddenly the same day as filming, the most incredible electric storm occurred, it was like a sign of destiny”. The film is called “Destiny” because it attempts to show how the life of one person can change the destiny of others”, something that Coco knows very well about.