There are opinions regarding whether to describe Latin Americans as Latinx or not. Those opinions aside, Latin Americans keep finding ways of unifying, and LALIFF has long been a massive part of it. Dedicated to showing the human experience, in its entirety, from the Latin American viewpoint, Edward James Olmos’s festival is a celebration of expression through television, film, music, digital and many forms of art. Conducted as a mostly virtual event in 2021, the film festival had some in-person programs since coronavirus cases declined in California.
Expected shorts and features included Rita Moreno’s 2021 documentary, 2020 Brazilian drama ‘Executive Order’, ‘Papi’ filmed in the Dominican Republican, and an Argentine short film entitled ‘Beats’. It also had a short named La Ciguapa Siempre, selected from LALIFF’s Netflix-sponsored series ‘Inclusion Fellowship’.
The must-attend LALIFF Arts Program included video projects like the following.
- ‘A Grief Letter To Covid’, a poetic reaction of Brown and Black people regarding a sense of being ignored in the coronavirus epidemic period.
- ‘The Big C’, a work of animation regarding the impacts of labor exploitation on climate change.
- ‘Cancel Prime’, a piece of work exploring the cost of convenience from big corporations such as Amazon and their policies for the welfare of people of color.
The event also had masterclasses in collaboration with Netflix, plus real-time music gigs and industry debate. This was the second consecutive year in which LALIFF’s programming went ahead in a virtual form due to the epidemic.