Director: Tomás Gutiérrez Alea
This film, of the final days of uprising against the Batista regime, first emphasizes the way ordinary people began to realise that violence was the only way before it turns attention to deeds of heroism among the mountain guerillas: finally it sweeps back to the streets of Havana and the final battles. Constructed as a trilogy of character studies, the film begins with "The wounded one". An underground fighter takes refuge in the home of a middle-class couple. Through the husband's fear, his wife together with the rebel are trapped and shot, while he himself escapes. The second sequence "Rebels— Sierra Maestra 1958" shows a group of bearded revolutionaries under attack; one falls wounded and the others react in various ways to being caught there by his immobility. He finally dies and the rebels march on. In the third part "The battle of Santa Clara" the attack on a tank, street fighting with Molotov cocktails, and the rebel's successful assault on a train full of Batista's soldiers are superbly filmed.
The film received a special prize at the 1961 Mos cow Festival and was also shown at the Mexicar Festival at Acapulco.
This is the first colour film from Cuban director Tomas Alea, who made Memories of Underdevelopment in 1968. His latest film is about a negro slave revolt on a sugar plantation in the late eighteenth… More »