With “Made in Cuba” Doc Showcase, the Sundance Film Festival Spotlights a Changing Island

Lead Photo: Photo: AP
Photo: AP
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A new year is right around the corner, which means new beginnings, new presidents, and yet another edition of the Sundance Film Festival. Over 39 years, Park City’s independent film-stravaganza has been heating up the snowy Rocky Mountain peaks with a deluge of prestigious premieres, celebrity-packed red carpets, and multi-million-dollar dealmaking, while never ceasing to mix up their programming with the most innovative and eye-opening audiovisual content on the globe.

This year, in addition to the highly-coveted official competition, the folks behind the festival are bringing an expansive selection of sidebars and special screenings that includes a privileged peek into the Cuba of 2016. Entitled “Made in Cuba,” this sidebar will showcase three short documentaries that are very much tapped into the challenges facing the rapidly-transforming island. Presented in collaboration with Cuba’s prestigious Escuela Internacional de Cine y Television (EICTV) and Guardian documentaries, “Made in Cuba” gives a platform to young Cuban directors exploring themes as diverse as wireless internet access, the country’s newly-minted housing market, and informal English-language schools for would-be migrants.

Together with the world premiere of director Austin Peters’ Give Me Future: Major Lazer in Cuba, the upcoming edition of Sundance promises to cut through the chilly mountain breeze with an unprecedented look into life on an island that continues fascinating the world with its unique contradictions, frustrations, and unflagging charm. So go ahead and make those reservations now, cause Park City gets lit.