The Wind Journeys

| March 27, 2011

The Film Movement Series delivers two South American gems, Ciro Guerra’s award- winning drama “Los Viajes del Viento” or “The Wind Journeys” and the Peruvian short “Danzak,” directed by Gabriela Yepes. Both are ripe with lovely cinematography and displays of various regional cultures.
The “Wind Journeys” describes the tale of Ignacio, played by Marciano Martinez, a troubadour who leaves his town and encounters an eclectic array of people as he embarks on returning his accordion to his master. Ignacio is not alone on his journey as Fermin (Yull Nunez), a passionate teenager from his hometown, joins him, fueled by a zeal to learn from his elder. The plot is enriched by a wonderful display of different cultural practises, such as a tribe’s drumming initiation ceremony; gorgeous cinematography; clever, beautiful shots; and teems with opportunities for interpretation.
There are several explanations for the viewer to bestow upon Ignacio and Fermin’s relationship and the complexities underlying their dynamic. They seem to be perfect foils for one another, representing: hope versus optimism, eager student versus unwilling mentor, or a love for music in contrast with having a life’s purpose devoid of passion.
Also broached are mystical undertones. Ignacio’s instrument is known as “The Devil’s Accordion.” There are a few instances where supernatural influences are suggested, another feature which strengthens the film’s artistic merit.
Overall, “The Wind Journeys” is a treasure from Columbia, in its visual and aural sensibilities, its cultural magnificences, and yet is more plentiful in its intellectual quandaries which lend potential for personal and collective knowledge. Its reception of the “Award of the City of Rome” at the Cannes Film Festival is well deserved.
“Danzak” is a film short inspired by “The Agony of Rasa Niti,” a short story by Peruvian writer Jose Maria Aguedas. While being a short, it has much to offer on a variety of levels. It is a beautiful story about a young girl “fulfilling her father’s last wish” that gives a brief glimpse into a rich culture, hinted at by the mythos and a vivid costume. This costume’s significance parallels the film’s profound insight into the cycle of the life of a dancer. There is also an interesting contrast of values as new world medicine may interfere with the natural cycle and old world tradition. In short, the film conveys interesting points about evolution, on both a personal and on a social level.
“Danzak” as well as “The Wind Journeys” are well worth watching as they provide beautiful material to indulge the mind and the heart.

About the Author:

Alicia Ayoub has been published by Filmmonthly.com and "Verve" Magazine of Hendersonville, Nc. Her passion for the entertainment industry does not end with the pen. After working as a theatrical stage manager for over a decade, she is trying her hand at film making; having worked for Dreamworks, PBS, and Stormcatcher Films. Currently, Alicia is revising a screenplay in between movie gigs.
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