Bristol Latin America Forum is an annual event held in Bristol on Latin American politics, society and culture. The Forum comprises of workshops, film, a panel discussion, dance, music, food and in 2008 for the first time closed with a World Cafe process.

It is organised by local grassroots Latin American solidarity groups, some of whom form part of larger national and international organisations and networks. It is not for profit, horizontally organised and we welcome your participation.

This blog began as a means of publicising and web-streaming the Forum in 2008 and is now a space for Bristol - Latin America related information all year round. See previous posts for details of last the 2008 Forum and video clips of the event. If you want to publicise an event please email the blog moderator.


El Topo: Friday 4th July

Cinema Klandestino present:
El Topo

The Cube Cinema, Dove St
4th July 2008, 7pm doors for pre-film party, 8pm start
£5 advance, £6 on the door, £1 discount with Cinema Klandestino badge or concessions.

Off the back of the last sell-out event, Cinema Klandestino return with another banger on 35mm. To celebrate the re-release of Jodorovsky's 1970 cult classic El Topo, you are invited to this exclusive screening on this special day. While over the pond they celebrate Freedom from British Imperialism, we raise our glasses to U.S. imperialism with a parodic wink. Join us to party from 7pm - dress code is psychedelic Western - before the film starts at 8pm. Advance booking recommended.

El Topo was the landmark cult film that began the whole 'midnight movie' phenomenon. It was the most talked about, most shocked about and most controversial quasi-Western head trip ever made transforming the way risk-taking audiences, seeking mainstream Hollywood alternatives, watched edgy underground films and how the industry learned to market them. New York cinema owner Ben Barenholtz first came across El Topo at the Museum of Modern Art. He booked the film to play seven nights a week at midnight in his run-down Elgin Cinema on 8th Avenue because, as the single ad he took out in The Voice put it, it was "too heavy to be shown any other way". El Topo regularly sold out every night for months, with many fans returning on a weekly basis. It ran at the theater through June 1971, until at the prompting of John Lennon—who was reported to have seen the film at least three times—Beatles manager Allen Klein purchased the film through his ABKCO film company.

The movie unfolds in two parts, opening to the sound of the it's eponymous hero playing his flute, showing him and his son crossing an unnamed desert on horse back. El Topo tells his son that, now he is seven he must bury his first toy and a picture of his mother in the sand. The second half takes place years later. El Topo is rescued by a band of deformed outcasts who, saving him from death, take him to their underground community where he lies comatose for several years; meditating on the four lessons. When he awakes he is 'born again' and is determined to repay the outcasts. Together with a dwarven girl who looked after him while he was in his coma, El Topo sets off on a quest to free them from their subterranean prison.
El Topo - A Book Of The Film:

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