Rosa Blanca (White Rose)

A film by Roberto Gavaldón
Based in the book by Bruno Traven

1961, Mexico, Historical Drama, Black and White, 105 min.
In English and Spanish with English and Spanish subtitles
Starring: Ignacio López Tarso, Christiane Martell, Reinhold Olszwski, Rita Macedo, Begoña Palacios.

 

1937, two years before Mexico nationalized its oil production. Jacinto Yañez (Ignacio López Tarso) is a simple indigenous landlord who lives and works at “Rosa Blanca”, a hacienda in Veracruz that has belonged to his family for generations. Jacinto is happy in his land, next to his family and in charge of the peasants who work for him, so he refuses to sell his property to the Condor Oil Company, a transnational corporation that is already exploiting the surrounding land for its rich oil reserves. For Jacinto, the value of his land is priceless, and the right to sell the land is not his, but he will inevitably face the implacable path of progress, caught between a government that protects the interests of foreign corporations over the rights of its own people, and the unstoppable ambition of Robert Kollenz (Reinhold Olszewski), president of Condor Oil Co. who is willing to do anything in order to obtain the land and exploit it. The film ROSA BLANCA was banned in Mexico for eleven years after its completion, and was finally released in 1972. For decades after, its public exhibition was semi-clandestine.

1937, dos años antes de la expropiación petrolera en México. Jacinto Yañez (Ignacio López Tarso), es un sencillo terrateniente indígena dueño de "Rosa Blanca", una hacienda en Veracruz que ha pertenecido a su familia durante generaciones. Jacinto es feliz en sus tierras, al lado de su familia y a cargo de sus trabajadores, y se niega a vender "Rosa Blanca" a la Condor Oil Company, una compañía transnacional que ya explota las ricas reservas de petroleo en las tierras aledañas. Para Jacinto, el valor de sus tierras no tiene precio, y el derecho de venderlas no le pertenece, pero inevitablemente se enfrentará al implacable paso del progreso, atrapado entre un gobierno que proteje los intereses de las corporaciones extranjeras por encima de los derechos de su pueblo, y la imparable ambición de Robert Kollenz (Reinhold Olszewski), presidente de la Condor Oil Company, quien está dispuesto a hacer lo que sea para obtener las tierras y explotarlas. ROSA BLANCA fué una película prohibida en México durante once años después de terminada. Su estreno en 1972, y durante décadas posteriores su exhibición fue semi-clandestina.

Eugenio del Bosque – Cine Las Americas

 

Credits:

Crew
Directed by Roberto Gavaldón
Screenplay: Emilio Carballido, Roberto Gavaldón, Phil Stevenson
Based on the novel "La Rosa Blanca" by Bruno Traven
Producers: Felipe Subervielle, Raúl Lavista
Production Companies: Clasa Films MundialesOriginal Music
Cinematographer: Gabriel Figueroa
Editor: Gloria Schoemann
Production Designer: Edward Fitzgerald
Set Decorator: Pablo Galván

Cast
Ignacio López Tarso
Christiane Martell
Reinhold Olszewski
Rita Macedo
Begoña Palacios
Carlos Fernández
John Kelly
Luis Beristáin
Antonio Carbajal
Alejandro Ciangherotti
Fernando Wagner
Katherine Walsh
Claudio Brook
George Neale
Pedro Galván
Eugenio Rossi
David Reynoso
Aurora Clavel
José Torvay
Enrique Lucero

 

RosaBlanca02

 

Mexican American Cultural Center
Black Box Theater
Wed. October 19, 8 PM – FREE!

Screens as part of the series
Literature in Mexican Cinema


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