The Pope’s Toilet (El baño del papa, Uruguay/Spain 2007), a heartbreaking and hilarious look at villagers preparing to make the most of a papal visit directed by Enrique Fernández and César Charlone, will reopen SFFS Screen at the Sundance Kabuki Cinemas on Friday, January 30, 2009.
Part charming Latin American tale of village absurdity á la Gabriel García Márquez and part acid social commentary, the South American hit film The Pope’s Toilet—based on Pope John Paul II’s actual visit to Uruguay in 1988—is a broadly comic farce about a browbeaten villager with an inspired plan to better his life. In the sleepy Uruguayan hamlet of Melo, smuggling is a way of life. Every day the smugglers pass back and forth on bicycles across the border with Brazil, paying bribes to the customs guards. While subsistence smuggler Beto is able to eke out a meager existence in this fashion, like most villagers he aspires to more. When the Pope announces that he will visit Melo, the villagers spring into action, plotting ways to capitalize on the pontiff’s visit. Most hope to sell food and drink to what will surely be hundreds of thousands of pilgrims, but Beto has what he thinks is a better idea: “I’ll build a toilet!” he says. “This film is about dreams,” says César Charlone (Oscar-nominated cinematographer of City of God), who codirected the film with Enrique Fernández. Beto’s obsession and the dreams of his neighbors anchor this touching story of those who find the will to live despite the deprivation that fate has condemned them to. Written by Enrique Fernández, César Charlone. Photographed by César Charlone. With César Troncoso, Virginia Méndez, Mario Silva. In Spanish with English subtitles. 97 min. Distributed by Film Movement.
At the Sundance Kabuki all seats are reserved and an amenities fee is in effect for most shows. Tickets are available through the Sundance Kabuki Cinemas box office, at kiosks in the lobby and online at www.sundancecinemas.com with print-at-home capability. San Francisco Film Society members will receive discounted admission to SFFS Screen programs at the box office only (not online or at the lobby kiosks).
For full, complete and up-to-date information on all SFFS Screen programming, including ticket purchasing, visit www.sffs.org. Information and tickets are also available at www.sundancecinemas.com.
Added by cinesoul on December 23, 2008