If the city of Lima was covered in dust, nobody would see it.
It is not, really, but all the same hardly anybody sees it or thinks about it, about its people cheated century after century and neglected by its rulers.
In order to come out of oblivion, there needs to be an earthquake grade 8 on the Richter scale or - as it has just happened - a discovery, in the most desolate mountains in Peru, of one of the largest mass graves in the history of the dirty war between the Peruvian army and the guerrilla movement Shining Path.
In 'Oblivion' (El Olvido) Lima could be any other Latin American city. Terrible things hide under its soil or in its streets full of carbon monoxide, in its bars, schools, hospitals and neighborhoods; but the country is not a hot item.
As the memory of the past is one of the topics which runs through most of my films, I intended, with 'Oblivion', to celebrate, in a poetic manner, this forgotten city and its people.
A few years ago, a young man who worked as a waiter in an elegant restaurant gave me the inspiration to attempt to discover my city. This young man, who I recognized after so many years away from Peru, told me how he managed to overcome with a smile the contempt he was exposed to at work. Others do it by making fun, quietly, of the class which oppresses them, remembering with pride that they have survived both economical crisis and terror organized by right and left (others entertain car drivers with pirouettes while they wait for a few coins).
'Oblivion' doesn't scream, it whispers. 'Oblivion' doesn't sob; it just cries.
In 'El Olvido' a bird flies over this forgotten city and stops here and there; it flies again and finally becomes a crystal ball that a young man keeps in perfect balance, challenging anonymity.
- Heddy Honigmann
a film by HEDDY HONIGMANN
DANIEL GUTIÉRREZ GRADOS
and many others
directed by HEDDY HONIGMANN
written by HEDDY HONIGMANN
in collaboration with
edited by DANNIEL DANNIEL & JESSICA DE KONING
research HEDDY HONIGMANN & SONIA GOLDENBERG
assistant director ESTER GOULD
photography ADRI SCHOVER N.S.C.
camera assistant MARCOS CAMACHO
sound PIOTR VAN DIJK
dubbing mixer HUGO DIJKSTAL
associate producer JUDITH VRERIKS
line producer Lima GUSTAVO SÁNCHEZ
production assistants Lima JULIAN TORES & ESTHER AYARZA
production IKON TV MARGIE MONFILS & BARBARA WIESING
commision editors MARGJE DE KONING (IKON) & ANNE EVEN (ZDF-Arte)
produced by CARMEN COBOS
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