[Blackstudies-l] “Carpinteros”— Finding humanity behind bars

Maria Lima lima at geneseo.edu
Fri Feb 3 06:36:05 EST 2017


ivetteromero posted: " Carlos Aguilar (Remezcla) writes about new film
Carpinteros [Woodpeckers], by Dominican director José María Cabral. Aguilar
gives ample information about the film and then interviews the director,
who offers insight about many aspects of filming this pa"
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New post on *Repeating Islands*
<http://repeatingislands.com/author/ivetteromero/> “Carpinteros”—First
Dominican Film to Premiere at Sundance
<http://repeatingislands.com/2017/02/02/carpinteros-first-dominican-film-to-premiere-at-sundance/>
by
ivetteromero <http://repeatingislands.com/author/ivetteromero/>

*[image: afiche-carpinteros-2a_logos-1]*

*Carlos Aguilar (Remezcla) writes about new film Carpinteros [Woodpeckers],
by Dominican director José María Cabral. Aguilar gives ample information
about the film and then interviews the director, who offers insight about
many aspects of filming this particular type of film. Here are just a few
excerpts; read the full article and interview at Remezcla
<http://remezcla.com/features/film/interview-jose-maria-cabral-carpinteros-sundance-2017>.
Aguilar writes:*

Adversity is a catalyst for creativity, and nowhere is this theory more
unequivocally true than behind bars. Those that, for diverse circumstances
ranging from false imprisonment to horrendous crimes, have been locked up
quickly learn to adapt and become impressively adept at making their stay
bearable. Companionship, as seen in Dominican director José María Cabral’s
fifth feature-length drama, *Carpinteros* (Woodpeckers), is high on the
list of priorities for all human beings, but even more so for those forced
into isolation as a form of punishment.

Centered on Julian Sosa (Jean Jean), a man caught between his Haitian roots
and the life he’s created on the other side of the island of Hispaniola,
*Carpinteros* is the first Dominican movie to ever premiere at the
prestigious Sundance Film Festival. It’s an honor that represents an
invaluable step forward in terms for visibility for the country’s cinema.
Cabral’s newest tale gets its name from a curious sign language designed by
both male and female inmates in the Najayo and La Victoria prisons in order
to exchange messages through the barred windows that separate facilities
for each gender. The level of complex ideas that can be expressed
*carpinteando* is shocking and exemplifies how clever people under pressure
can become when seeking to connect. This form of communication in turn
takes its name from behavior typical to woodpeckers themselves.

[. . .] Shot on location and employing real prisoners, Cabral crafted a
universal drama about the power of romance to overcome even the most dire
of circumstances. The film is still looking for a US distributor and is
embarking on the festival circuit. Miami and Guadalajara are next. Here is
what the Dominican filmmaker had to say about his most internationally
successful project to date.

*On Discovering the Humanity inside Violent Prisons*

A friend told me that he was teaching classes inside these prisons and he
had heard about inmates communicating through the barred windows. I went
there and saw it with my own eyes. I discovered something very peculiar. We
always think about violence, dirtiness, and darkness when it comes to
prisons, but there is also a sensitive side about them. Human sensitivity
can’t be removed no matter how hard they try. When I saw this I thought it
was very impressive how they developed this specific signed language to
communicate with each other. I took advantage of this opportunity and
started writing a screenplay. I spent nine months there writing with them.
It’s a love story because the most common stories there are about love. [.
. .]

For full article, see http://remezcla.com/features/
film/interview-jose-maria-cabral-carpinteros-sundance-2017/
*ivetteromero <http://repeatingislands.com/author/ivetteromero/>* |
February 2, 2017 at 10:31 pm | Tags: Carpinteros
<http://repeatingislands.com/tag/carpinteros/>, Dominican film
<http://repeatingislands.com/tag/dominican-film/>, Dominican prisons
<http://repeatingislands.com/tag/dominican-prisons/>, Dominican Republic
<http://repeatingislands.com/tag/dominican-republic/> | Categories: Film
<http://repeatingislands.com/category/film/>, News
<http://repeatingislands.com/category/news/> | URL: http://wp.me/psnTa-tl1

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