Tribute GIFF: John SaylesKP

Men with Guns

USA, Mexico1997129mincolor/b&wFiction

The movie is set in an unnamed Latin American country. The protagonist Humberto is a retired doctor that lost his wife. A long time ago, he trained seven students, through a government program, to provide health care to impoverished citizens in a remote region. One day, bored with his mundane life, he decides to find out how the seven students are doing. On his journey to meet them, he accumulates a few travelling companions: a deserter from the Army, an orphan, a fallen priest and a woman who has turned mute after having been raped. Humberto finds that his journey is not a happy reunion with the students but a discovery of tragedy.
Sayles made the film based on a true story told by his friend, novelist Francisco Goldman, that in a Latin American country, government-trained doctors in a remote mountainous village were killed because they treated guerillas. As is in the title, the movie is about how the men with guns - representing power and tools - like the government forces have been ruling and killing the people without the guns like guerillas. How many people have suffered from the violent power concentrated on very few people? Who gave them the guns?

1999 Golden Globe Awards
1997 San Sebastián International Film Festival
Beginning with ///Return of the Secaucus 7/// (1979) the films of John Sayles have been integral to the development of Independent Film in the United States. His films depict a world very different from the version offered by Hollywood. Sayles career as a storyteller began with his fiction which brought Sayles to the attention of legendary Director/Producer Roger Corman. One of his films ///Passion Fish/// (1992) won Sayles his first Academy Award nomination for Best Original Screenplay. Sayles continues to work for hire on features and television series.
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