Citizen Kastro-Citizen Alcides
Citizen Kastro-Citizen Alcides / Regina Coyula
Regina Coyula, 14 June 2017– Jorge Enrique Lage interviews Miguel Coyula
… at many times during the interview, Alcides interrupted himself and
began to speak to Fidel as if he were right in front of him. It’s
something one saw a lot in our parents’ generation: bothered by
something Fidel was saying on TV and arguing with him, but supposedly
there was no one listening inside the box. Documentaries offer that
opportunity, that fantasy secret for many.
For me the film is a love-hate story between two men and a woman. The
men are Rafael Alcides and Fidel Castro; the woman is the Revolution.
Alcides lost her, and deeply resents the man who snatched her from him
to dominate her, strangle her, and make her into an unrecognizable
ghost. But in spite of it all, Alcides continues loving her somehow.
When he died I said that one of my actors had died, but Fidel appears
in Memories of Development, Nobody, and Blue Heart. In the three films,
I had to listen to many hours of his speeches and conversations to be
able to edit and construct the dialogs in them. I can tell you it was
pretty exhausting to work with him, who’d succeeded in telling me the
lines I needed. But definitely he was one of the great actors of the
20th Century, including at the beginning of the 21st.
Supposedly, now one can read it as a great hallucination too, but when
Alcides speaks, he addresses him in the present, as if he were alive.
This doesn’t come out of nowhere. Anyone who reads Granma and reads the
recycled quotes from Fidel in every issue can, as in the persistence
embedded in all the talking heads you see on Cuban television, arrive at
the conclusion that we’re being governed by a dead man.
Translated by: JT
Source: Citizen Kastro-Citizen Alcides / Regina Coyula – Translating