Strawberry and Chocolate (Fresa y chocolate, Cuba-Mexico-Spain-USA, 1994)

Gay v straight in Cuba

This is Tomás Gutiérrez Alea‘s penultimate film (co-directed with Juan Carlos Tabío); he’s famous for Memories of Underdevelopment (Cuba, 1968). Strawberry and Chocolate focuses on the relationship between the gay Diego and straight, and staunch ‘communist’, David who’s initially spying on him. It’s a marvellously engaging drama, primarily because of Jorge Perugorría‘s superb performance as the vivacious and vulnerable Diego. It traces how David’s initial hostility dissipates as he gets to know Diego: prejudice is always blind.

It’s a shame that films that have the message ‘gay people are no different’ have to be made but it’s good that they are when required. I don’t know how controversial this would have been in Cuba but the film’s accessiblity earned it a ‘best foreign language’ Oscar nomination.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: