An exercise of memory

Director Ana García Blaya visits this year's festival with the film, The Good Intentions. 

Av 7. nov 2019

- Actually, I never thought of reaching more people than my friends and family when I wrote this film, Ana García Blaya states talking about her debut film, The Good Intentions (2019).

Yet, now her film has reached all the way to film festivals in Toronto and San Sebastian, before coming to Oslo as part of the 2019 Films from the South program.

November 8th at 6.15 pm and November 9th at 6.30 pm: Q&A with director Ana García Blaya after the screening. Buy tickets here. 

The film is fictional, but strongly based upon Blaya’s childhood experiences in Buenos Aires in the 90’s, evolving around her relationship to her father.

- When I wrote the script ten years ago, I never thought it would become a feature film, I was just happy for the story to be written down, as the final piece of art. It wasn’t before my dad passed away, that I decided to go further with the project. Together with my sister, I presented the script at the Ópera prima price at the INCAA (The national film institute in Argentina), where we won the contest, and so we shot the story.

In addition to her sister, other family members also have been involved in making the film.

- My brother Pablo’s band have composed most part of the music, and there is also three themes composed by my father. He had a band that was very important in our lives, and I also used to play in this band myself, Blaya can reveal.

But it’s not only because of the familiar bonds that Blaya has chosen her family’s music as part of the soundtrack for The Good Intentions.

- The punk, rock and classical music that my dad educated to us as we grew up, helped us to create the right ambience of the 90’s in the film.

The music reflects upon dwindling times, and creates a more universal feeling to the personal aspects of the film.

- Finally, the narrative of the film is a simple love story between a father and his daughter.

In the film, the 10 years old Amanda faces a dilemma that requires matureness when she learns that her mother and stepfather are moving to Paraguay to escape a poverty-stricken Argentina, and that her father will be left alone in Buenos Aires.

- Even though I didn’t plan the film to have a political will, it occurs to me now that the film also speaks about how politics influences everybody’s life all the time. The politics presented by the politicians in the 90s in Argentina obliged a lot of people to take very difficult decisions at the time, which changed their lives forever.

Even though The Good Intentions tells about difficult choices in life, both for the children and the parents, the film is an absolute feel good-film.

- When you are a child, the world that you know is the world that you accept because it doesn’t exist another one. I don’t remember my childhood to be something traumatic all though the struggle of my parents raising us in a very different social and economical environment.

To Blaya it has been important to communicate all this without exaggerating drama.

- The film evokes the point of view of a child that lives the life that she has very naturally, without wondering what kind of education she is receiving from her parents, until she is confronted with her parent’s choice. I simply wanted to show things the way I remember them.

This casualness is reflected in the form of the film; The Good Intentions is structured by both home video clips and professional footage with actors.

- In the preproduction process I had the intuition that I was going to work or mix different kinds of footage, but I didn’t decide finally upon this before the editing process. When I took the choice, I thought it would take pressure out of the fiction. In this way, the movie is an exercise of memory in itself, because I grew up seeing my father’s video footage and I have them in my mind. There are some things I never forget due to that.