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Review: 'Una Noche'

August 30, 2013 12:24 p.m.

KPBS film critic Beth Accomando review the new Cuban film, "Una Noche."

Related Story: Review: 'Una Noche'


This is a rush transcript created by a contractor for KPBS to improve accessibility for the deaf and hard-of-hearing. Please refer to the media file as the formal record of this interview. Opinions expressed by guests during interviews reflect the guest’s individual views and do not necessarily represent those of KPBS staff, members or its sponsors.

ANCHOR INTRO: Art imitates life with the Cuban film “Una Noche.” Last year two of its actors defected to the US en route to the film’s premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival. The film opens at the Digital Gym Cinema this Labor Day Weekend. KPBS arts reporter Beth Accomando says the characters in the film also attempt to flee the island for a better life in America.


London-born filmmaker Lucy Molloy fell in love with Cuba when she visited Havana ten years ago.

CLIP singing on street

She also became obsessed with a story a boy told her about his friends who tried to flee Cuba on a raft. She says her film, “Una Noche,” is fueled by “the feeling of being stifled and stuck, by the desire to get away and realize a dream.” What intensifies this feeling for Cubans is that the US and all it promises feels close enough to touch. That inspires people to try by any means available to cross that 90 mile strip of ocean.

CLIP Radio report

Molloy’s approach is very humanistic. Her movie is never political and her characters seem far removed from the Communist revolution of a half century ago. This new generation is less motivated by politics than by a youthful desire to find something better.

Molloy’s film is set within a single 24-hour period and manages to be both tragic and hopeful. Her untrained actors anchor the film with achingly real performances. Molloy captures the Cuban spirit of energy, resiliency, and passion. She does an impressive job of blending an intimate story of friends with a meticulously observed portrait of Havana.

“Una Noche” is Molloy’s first feature but it marks her as a talent to watch.

Beth Accomando, KPBS News.