Alright, so it might not get you in a party mood for the weekend ahead, but if you’re in London you might be interested in tonight’s screening of ‘Child Miners’, followed by a Q&A session with the director, Rodrigo Vazquez. The film focuses on two young boys who are forced by family circumstances to earn a living as miners in Bolivia, during the dawning months of the Morales presidency. Another film by Vazquez, ‘Looking for the Revolution’ was screened on British TV last year, and I enjoyed it a lot: it was thoughtful and non-hyperbolic, and got inside the political dynamics of the MAS government as well as showing the sometimes difficult job done by grassroots leaders. Tonight’s event is at journalistic organisation the Frontline Club, and their blurb goes as follows:
‘Child Miners is a poignant observational documentary from acclaimed director Rodrigo Vazquez (Inside Hamas, Bolivia, Looking for the Revolution) that follows the plight of two young Bolivian tin miners. Jorge and Alex are two of 3,000 children working in Bolivia´s tin mines. This film follows their lives as they struggle to survive on less than one dollar a day while fighting against hunger and silicosis, the miners disease. It is set against the backdrop of the country’s newly elected indigenous president, Evo Morales, a man of principle who promises to improve the lives of ordinary Bolivians. The question is, will his promises ring true for the two young miners?
Director, Vazquez states:
“I filmed child miners Alex Choque and Jorge Mollinedo in December 2005, when Bolivia’s first indigenous President Evo Morales won the elections with the promise of transforming poor people’s lives. Evo promised to give miners a better life by re-nationalizing the industry.
Jorge’s father has contracted silicosis, the ‘miners’ disease’ and now is out of work, so Jorge had to increase his work load to keep bringing food to the house, thus increasing the chances of becoming ill like his father. Newly-arrived Cuban doctors sent by Evo’s government establish that Jorge has begun developing the “miner’s disease” and advised him to stop working immediately. But now more than ever, Jorge needs to keep working.”
The Frontline Club is at 13 Norfolk Place, W2 1QJ, and the film starts at 7pm. Entry is £8. See you there?