Like fellow filmmakers Chris Marker and Jean-Luc Godard, French director Bruno Muel belonged to the militant Medvedkine, a group of socially engaged filmmakers active between 1967 and 1974. In Septembre Chilien, a documentary about the 1973 coup, he mixes official footage with clandestine shots of the rising opposition.
The film is a textbook example of the fierce Medvedkine cinema of the 1970s, striving for solidarity between filmmakers and the people. Through participatory cinema, Muel wanted to give Chileans a voice at the time of the military coup.
“I heard the news of the coup on the radio on 12 September 1973 and immediately decided to go to Chile to film,” says Muel. “Together with Théo Robichet, I was already involved with Medvedkine. What was happening in Chile was close to our hearts.” The film was eventually awarded the Prix Jean Vigo.
11 September 1973 led to a far-right neo-liberal regime under dictator Augusto Pinochet, leaving a mark on the minds of a generation around the world. BOZAR, the Joseph Jacquemotte Cultural Association, and the KINOLATINO Ciné-Club are commemorating 50 years since the putsch by programming films by four filmmakers that value solidarity, democracy, and humanism.