The Facets Cinémathèque is located at 1517 W. Fullerton Ave. in Chicago. For more information on films playing in the Cinémathèque, please call 773-281-4114. To order advance tickets online, visit the TicketWeb website by clicking here.
Chicago Theatrical Premiere
THE DEVIL'S MINER
Best Documentary Chicago Intl Film Fest
Best Intl Documentary Jerusalem Film Fest
Humanitarian Award Mexico City Film Fest
"Formally beautiful, a work of cinema." -FIPRESCI
"The world so beautifully photographed in THE DEVIL'S MINER--with its festivals, folkloric dances and folk art devils--seems conjured from the magic realism of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, except for the unbelievably harsh odds facing the boy miners who narrate the tale." -Los Angeles Times
"A study in courage [and] an unforgettable journey through hell under the earth, where Satan is worshipped as king. Captures both the claustrophobic mine shafts and exceptionally beautiful images of mountains and sky, making [the film] a memorable visual experience." -Variety
Recommended! "A powerful indictment" -Chicago Reader
"Compelling" -The Onion
"A wrenching, well-shot documentary...Directors Davidson and Ladkani take us far into those mineshafts for some amazing footage, revealing a real-life hell." -Chicago Tribune
Welcome to hell: the mines of Cerro Rico, Bolivia, known to the local tribes as "the mountains that eat men." The Devil's Miner follows two brothers, 14-year-old Basilio (called Papa by his younger siblings because he is the family's breadwinner) and 12-year-old Bernardino, who live in poverty with their mother in the mountains of Bolivia. Basilio was a fatherless 12-year-old when he started working the long shifts in the silver mines, braving deadly conditions to earn enough money to attend school. Through the children's eyes, we share the dismal conditions in this 16th century mine, where devout Catholics must sever their ties with God each time they enter the shafts, because of the ancient belief that the devil, as represented in the hundreds of statues constructed in the tunnels, determines the fate of all who work there. Raised without a father, the boys assume many adult responsibilities and must work to afford the clothing and supplies vital to their education. Basilio believes only the mountain devil's generosity will allow them to earn enough money to continue the new school year. Without an education, the brothers have no chance to escape their destiny in the silver mines.
Directed by Kief Davidson and Richard Ladkani, U.S.A./Germany, 2005, BetaSP, 82 mins. In Spanish with English subtitles.