Miami Film Festival showcases films from around the globe

  The festivities of the 26th annual Miami International Film Festival (MIFF) will commence tonight as they screen their first film, Valentino: The Last Emperor, at the Gusman Center For The Performing Arts in Downtown Miami following an opening night celebration at the Freedom Tower. Valentino is a documentary that documents the life of the legendary fashion designer Valentino and his 45-year association with his sometime boyfriend and business partner.

  One of the films that the MIFF will showcase at the Gusman Center on Sunday is a documentary called Cachao: Uno Mas, which was produced by Miami’s own Andy Garcia (Ocean’s Thirteen). The film pays tribute to one of the greatest Afro-Cuban musicians of all time, Israel López, who also known as ‘Cachao’. This documentary features a live concert that took place in San Francisco and feature interviews with Cachao’s musical collaborators Garcia, John Santos, Ray Santos and Orestes Vilató. These interviews are constructed to help trace Cachao’s musical journey from his early days in Cuba to worldwide fame and recognition.

  The documentary is short with a running length of 68 minutes, but the film manages to weave between Cachao’s performances in San Francisco with his musical collaborators and interviews with Cachao and his friends with stories told about the legendary musician’s career. Anyone who has followed Cachao’s career or any moviegoer who loves a great documentary with excellent music should appreciate the film for what it is, a celebration of a man’s life and his music.

  From the seedy underworld of his films such as King of New York to his recent documentary called Chelsea on the Rocks about the historic New York hotel and the artists, musicians and poets who lived there, New York has become filmmaker Abel Ferrara’s muse. Ferrara, who has collaborated with actors Christopher Walken (The Deer Hunter) and Willem Dafoe (Platoon) more than once, will be honored by the MIFF on March 12th at the Gusman Center as part of the festival’s Career Achievement Tribute.

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