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Araya1959

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  • 4.2
The restoration of Margot Benacerraf's brilliant film ARAYA is a landmark in cinema history. The film was hailed as a masterpiece of poetic cinema and a forerunner of feminist Latina cinema on its re-release by Milestone. The peninsula of Araya in northeastern Venezuela, is one of the most arid places on earth. For five hundred years, since its discovery by the Spanish, the region's salt has been exploited manually. A 17th-century fortress built to protect against pirate raids stands as a reminder of the days when salt was worth almost as much as gold and great fortunes were made. Benacerraf captures the life of the salineros and their back-breaking work in breathtaking images. The Peredas family works at night in the salt marshes, the Ortiz are fishermen and the Salaz collect salt. The three stories underline the harsh life of this region (all of which vanished with the arrival of industrial exploitation).

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1 member likes this review

Very interesting look into lives of years ago.

Member Reviews (3)

Very interesting look into lives of years ago.

1 member likes this review
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top reviewer

Interesting documentary about a probably long lost way of life. Good video and sound quality; makes we wonder what may have become of their culture.

A true diamond in the rough. Steady, atmospheric look at a people and their fading way of life. Well shot. Really enjoyed it.