February 28, 2024 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Oliver Stone’s South of the Border:

Outside Laemmle’s Monica Theatre on the evening of July 2, the lineup of ticket buyers jostled for sidewalk space with cheering fans greeting Oliver Stone as he arrived to talk about his new film South of the Border. There were also demonstrators, who disapproved of the film’s main subject, Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez.

“Oliver Stone is getting paid to be Hugo Chavez’s Minister of Propaganda,” read one demonstrator’s sign.

South of the Border is a documentary about the political changes that have occurred in South America over the last ten years. Most of the film recounts the rise, fall, and rise again of Chavez, a former soldier who staged an unsuccessful coup against the Venezuelan government in 1992, was jailed, and later succeeded in being elected president due to overwhelming support from the poor majority of Venezuela.

Stone uses footage from both American and Venezuelan media, along with interviews, to tell Chavez’s story. The film unabashedly supports Chavez, who describes himself as a “Bolivarian” after the legendary leader Simon Bolivar who liberated six South American countries, including Venezuela, from colonialism.

Since Venezuela’s main resource is oil, South of the Border examines the political situation in Venezuela through the situation of oil interests. Frequently mentioned in the film are the IMF (International Monetary Fund, a global organization that deals with monetary and economic issues) and the DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration). Stone’s film takes a dim view of the role of these agencies.

In addition to Chavez, Stone also talks to several other South American leaders whom he contacted with Chavez’s help. These include Evo Morales of Bolivia, Lula da Silva (Brazil), Cristina Kirchner (Argentina), Fernando Lugo (Paraguay), Raul Castro (Cuba), and Rafael Correa of Ecuador.

When the floor was opened for questions following the screening, the first comment came from an opposition demonstrator, who challenged Stone on some issues he seemed to not have spoken to-that “Chavez changed the Constitution to declare himself president for life; that there are 28 political prisoners in Venezuela, and that many publications have been shut down.”

Stone refuted some of these allegations, calling them “myths” perpetrated by the American government and media. He said that the people of Venezuela voted for a Constitutional referendum and that Chavez made changes to the presidential term limit, also via a referendum. The current Venezuelan constitution calls for a presidential election every six years.

Stone did not answer the charge about publications but according to this reporter’s research, on the Press Freedom Index of Reporters Without Borders which is based on a survey and ranks countries according to how much press freedom they have, Venezuela’s rank is 124 on a list of 175 countries. At press time, this reporter was unable to obtain further information on the question of political prisoners.

“‘President for Life’ is a term that the right wing likes to use,” Stone added. “They have buzz words they use to get the people going if they use them over and over again.”

Santa Monica activist Jerry Rubin, expressing regret for the negative reviews of South of the Border, wanted to know “what this full house (the audience) can do to promote the film?”

Stone stated that he had hope for the “alternative media-the Internet” and word-of-mouth to spread the word about the film. South of the Border will be opening in 20 cities across the U.S. and will eventually be shown in 30 countries.

Stone is currently editing a documentary series (10 hours in length) and also finishing Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, which will be released this fall. He admitted that his work schedule doesn’t give him additional time to promote South of the Border but he hopes it will be seen by a wider audience eventually.

Stone’s vision is that the country will be taken back from what he calls the “educated elite” and that the working class will unite. “I think the immigrant population of this country is the hope of the future.”

in News
Related Posts

(Video) Pro-Palestine Protest at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel

February 28, 2024

February 28, 2024

Protesters were there to protest the arrival of U.S. Representative Nancy Pelosi Counter-protesters drove by in a car. @smmirrornews Pro-Palestine...

(Video) Restaurants Replace Glass Front Doors After Late Night Robbery Spree in Del Ray

February 28, 2024

February 28, 2024

Seven restaurants and small businesses in Del Rey and Venice, including Nick the Greek and Dudley Market, were robbed. Council...

SMMUSD Appoints New Asst. Superintendent of Education Services

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

Dr. Williamson Will Assume Her Role on March 8, Bringing 17 Years of Education Experience In a special board meeting...

Hollywood Royalty to Shine at 96th Oscars: First Wave of Star-Studded Presenter Lineup Unveiled

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

Incredible Lineup of Actors and Previous Oscar Winners Announced Executive producer and showrunner Raj Kapoor, along with executive producers Molly...

Vote Smart, Vote Early: Streamlining Your 2024 Presidential Primary Experience in L.A. County

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

Skip the Lines and Save Time – Your Guide to Early Voting Options  In preparation for the upcoming 2024 Presidential...

Iconic Venice Beach Sculpture and Landmark to be Removed, Returned to Artist’s Property

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

Since the Money, Effort or Desire to Purchase the Piece Appears to Not Be There, the Artist Wants It Back...

(Video) Heartfelt candlelight vigils in Westchester and West Hollywood for Nex Benedict

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

The non-binary 16 year old student with Choctaw ancestry died in Owasso, Oklahoma after being beaten by three older high...

Sweet Lady Jane Sparks Hope of Return – Popular Bakery Hints at Reopening Across LA

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

After Abrupt Closures, Beloved Bakery Hints at a Comeback, Leaving Fans Intrigued  Sweet Lady Jane, a Los Angeles cake bakery...

Waymo’s LA Expansion Hits Roadblock: CPUC Temporarily Halts Self-Driving Company’s Plans

February 26, 2024

February 26, 2024

California Public Utilities Commission suspends Waymo’s service expansion for 120 days. California’s Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has put a temporary...

Real Estate Giant Funds LAPD Union Fund to Sway L.A. City Council Election in March

February 26, 2024

February 26, 2024

Santa Monica Company Responsible for LA’s Largest Mass Eviction Gives $400,000 Santa Monica-based Real estate investment trust company Douglas Emmett...

Santa Monica College Unveils 2024 Spring Jazz Series Lineup

February 26, 2024

February 26, 2024

Tickets for each concert are priced at $10 and can be purchased in advance The Santa Monica College Music Department...

Downtown Wellness Center Bridges Gap Between Psychedelics and Meditation

February 26, 2024

February 26, 2024

The Center Has Partnered With Local Agencies and Gave Free Sessions to Around 500 Veterans in Two Years By Zach...

Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District Calls Special Board of Education Meeting

February 26, 2024

February 26, 2024

SMMUSD Gathers to Address Time-Sensitive Resolutions In a press release sent on Saturday, February 24, The Santa Monica-Malibu School District...

 39th Independent Spirit Awards Celebrates Independent Cinema in Santa Monica

February 25, 2024

February 25, 2024

Santa Monica Pier Hosts Annual Awards Ceremony Amid Pro-Palestinian Protest The 39th Independent Spirit Awards ceremony, another precursor to the...

U.S. Supreme Court Refuses to Consider Landlords’ Challenge to Rent-Control Laws

February 25, 2024

February 25, 2024

New York Landlords’ Bid to Challenge Rent-Control Laws Fails The U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear a significant property rights...