Montoneros Film Analysis

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If something was missing in Blaustein’s documentary (and also from the debate about Montoneros that was taking place around that time), it was a political discussion that transcended a mere analysis of military objectives. Montoneros were Peronist militants who staked their identity on Perón’s approval, granted from afar while he was exiled in Spain. Nevertheless, when the political conditions made it such that the exiled leader could return, Montoneros became, paradoxically, not only collaborators in his reconquering of power, but also an obstacle that he would soon condemn and persecute. After Perón’s death, when Isabel became president (and José López Rega, leader of the Argentine Anticommunist Alliance, tacitly took power), the persecution…show more content…
The cast includes Roberto Perdía, ex-Montonero commander; Jorge Rulli, founder of the Peronist Youth; Graciela Daleo, Chiqui Falcone, and Topo Devoto, all former militants; and Domingo Godoy, from the Peronist Shantytown Movement. Among other things, then, one of the great contributions of Montoneros is how it works with archival material, notably a brief television interview with the guerrilla group’s most reviled leader, Mario Firmenich, whom the film notes “charged fifteen thousand dollars to appear on TV.” Firmenich and Rodolfo Galimberti are, according to Rulli, the story’s “sinister” characters, and at a certain point he mentions a theory—widespread among former militants—that the former was a double agent for the Argentine…show more content…
Over the years he would hone a style that would become progressively more personal and complex. In Montoneros, for example, he avoids a journalistic bent and instead gives the film a “human” feel and narrative focus. Far from weakening the political side of the story, this personal approach ends up bringing the political into even sharper relief. To that end, the director chooses Ana Testa as his protagonist, a Montonera militant and ESMA survivor whose husband the military disappeared. Her story reveals the personal and very human drama that many militants experienced. By focusing on one story among many, Di Tella works beyond a stereotyped view of the militant. Ana leads Di Tella to different filming locations, all the while offering explanations, anecdotes, and even doubts. She narrates a series of discrete episodes: from the impact that Gillo Pontecorvo’s (1919–2006) The Battle of Algiers (1966) had on both militants and their captors, to her ambiguous relationship with one of the Navy’s most sinister villains. She also tells about the clandestine life she lived with her husband, Juan Silva, whom she saw for the last time in

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