to San Diego
About the director
In the winter of 1952, when Eva Perón was on her deathbed in Buenos Aires, countless, popular demonstrations took place. Many people undertook extreme exploits, such as endless fasts, setting records for continuous work, and dance marathons; world records for gliders were broken, as well as records for walking backwards, sack carrying, etc. These things were all done by ordinary people who wished to contribute to saving Evita, participate somehow, and be close to her greatness and to eternity. A few years ago, and attracted by these stories, I started working on one of them. It was the story of two lumber workers who decide to take an enormous timbo-tree trunk on their shoulders -on foot- from the jungle of Misiones Province to Buenos Aires. They were convinced that they would, thus, contribute to the recovery of their leader and protector. On the one hand, the story interested me as a manifestation of magical thinking that links cause and effect beyond rationality, but I was particularly attracted by the intangible ties that link myths and their followers. In this case, the link between Evita and those who perceive her as unreachable and at the same time as their equal, as somebody who knew how to attain glory in the name of everyone. I abandoned that script -like many others- but, when several years later, in March, 2004, Diego Armando Maradona was hospitalized due to a cardiac crisis at the Swiss-Argentine Hospital and the phenomenon of nearly religious devotion suddenly repeated itself, I revisited the story of the lumber workers, and updated it. Now it is the story of "Tati" Benitez, a chain saw operator somehow less naive than his predecessors, the lumberjacks. For "Tati", meeting Diego Maradona, being close to him and maybe being able to have a picture taken with his idol is his most important wish. There is also in him, in a somewhat diffuse way, the suspicion that when he gets to know Maradona something in his life will change for the better. With these wishes he undertakes a trip. "Tati" Benitez' journey along Route 14, through impoverished regions, is filled with both despair and hope. At the end of the credits you will read "Written and directed by Carlos Sorin". But this is only a formality because something must appear in the credits. The fact is that the film was not entirely written by me. I merely assumed authorship while alone at my computer during weeks of editing, attempting to find the thread that unites this intricate puzzle of possible of shots. Though I have tried to achieve a narrative structure working on the previous script, I realize that what finally appears in the film is the product of that random dynamic of events which takes over when one begins filming. Because my filmmaking is dynamic and necessarily chaotic. Many times I have the sensation of being thrown into the rapids in a boat without oars. I am aware that sometimes I sacrifice an elaborate setting, a well-structured construction and those aspects related to the beauty of a film. But I do so in order to achieve what Alberto Moravia called "the vitality of a work of art" or "the imperfection of a living work of art". Sometimes I have the feeling that I have gone that way, and other times that I have walked away from it. Once again I will work with non-actors. Or in some cases with just about actors. In addition to my doubtless tendency to complicate my life with this way of doing things, the objective is the same as in my previous films: to achieve a moment -or many, if possible- in which the film comes close to something real. Not having real actors, in the literal sense, means not having a director or a technique for direction. My role is to promote what happens in the scene and register it interminably, repeating exhaustively each take with the hope that at some point person and personality coincide, overlap and something miraculous appears, something which has to do with the truth, something real and unrepeatable, like a tiny gold nugget. With these moments, if I am able to obtain them, I try to put together my movies. Perhaps it is only an illusion, because "reality" is reality and trying to capture it systematically transforms the craft of filming into a battle that is lost before it is even engaged. In that case, I will have only told a story.