Analyse #13: ¡Que viva México!
Je vous partage ici l'analyse que j'ai fait du film d'Eisenstein, "¡Que viva México!", immense docu-fiction sur l'histoire du Mexique, son rapport à ses origines, l'impact de la colonisation, le rapport à la mort, la dictature de Porfirio Diaz où encore l'arrivée de la religion catholique au seizième siècle.
Ayant récemment passé 6 mois au Mexique en semestre d'études, j'ai pu étudier la culture Mexicaine, ainsi que son impact sur l'Art, et ce qu'elle signifie pour le peuple mexicain. Je vous partage ici une partie de ma dissertation finale que j'avais faite sur la culture nationale du Mexique et comment elle s'était diluée au fil des années dans divers parties de la société mexicaine moderne comme par exemple dans le cinéma, dans la Famille, dans l'explosion démographique des villes, dans les lois ou encore dans l'enseignement.
Pour montrer l'influence de la culture Mexicaine sur la société Mexicaine et le monde en général j'avais pris l'exemple de ce film, qui montre le pouvoir de fascination de ce pays, même pour les réalisateurs étrangers. Eisenstein avait d'ailleurs très bien compris dans son film que les cultures anciennes du Mexique, mayas et aztèques, avaient influencées la société mexicaine dans sa globalité pour les millénaires et les siècles qui suivirent.
Mon analyse est par contre en anglais, dîtes moi si vous n'y comprenez vraiment rien je la retraduirai en français si vous voulez, mais je pense qu'il est toujours bon de pratiquer un peu l'anglais qui reste assez important à maîtriser.
“¡Que viva Mexico” is a movie by Serguei Eisenstein, a Russian director also known for a lot of movies which have revolution the way to create impressive images and to tell stories using different techniques of “mise-en-scène” like employ the mounting to explain ideas and how the history goes. He used to make films of propaganda for the communist regime of Staline during the beginning of the twentieth century. In all his movies, he tried to mix documentaries scenes with fictional scenes which is create a big proximity with the reality. Most of this movies also tell about historical events which have changed the history.
We can divide the career of Eisenstein in three principal parts. In the beginning of his career until 1929, when we shoot four first silent movies, “Strike” in 1924, “Battleship Potemkin” in 1925, “October” in 1928 and finally “The General Line” in 1929. All those films are propaganda, in those years the movies were considered as the best way to make propaganda by the communist regime, which control everything. But the communist message which take place in those film don’t limit Eisenstein to experiment a lot of things in his “mise en scène” and most of those movies are today considered as classics and very important movies in the history of the cinema. Eisenstein always privileged groups of people rather than individualities which occur than we can consider his cinema as a social cinema, showing big socials events, social issues and class conflicts. He also mix real scenes with fictional scenes and use non-professional actors which occur an authenticity to the stories he tell, and a universality to his purpose.
So, the project was to show a very wide range about the culture of Mexico, about the costumes, the traditions, and the oppositions of Identity which took place between indigenous, the historical and mystic Mexico, and the conquistadores and the Mexico as he was during the revolution. Now let’s analyse how Eisenstein represent the national culture of Mexico, with his oppositions, contradictions and all his complexity.
The first opposition who take place in the movie is the opposition between the pyramids of Chichen Itzá and contemporary funerals. In that first opposition, Eisenstein evoke the point of view about the death over the years in Mexico, Chichen Itzá represent the death as a sacrifice to gods to the quest of eternity and the funerals represent the finality of life, the death as the end of the life, the fatality of death as the biological end of human being. If the movie shows with a lot of gravity the funeral, it shows also a wedding in the part Sandunga, which contrast a lot with the funeral. In fact, Sandunga is related to the effervescence of life, a wedding following the indigenous traditions, under the signs of the animal deities. That part contrast with the next one, which is Fiesta, which shows a corrida, the deadly confrontation between animals and men’s. That place is also related to the brutality of the Spaniards, showing a trivial feast of the victory of Spaniards on the Mexicans, the victory to Catholicism on the Aztec religion. The opposition between the points of view about death between religions is also one of the main subjects of this part, the Christian rite has substituted agony and suffering for death. To show that, Eisenstein shoot some marches of cavalry with Mexicans who needs to walk supporting a huge cross, as Jesus Christ, to make them accept the catholic religion. Those walks of cavalry contrast with the walk of Mexicans up the pyramids in the prologue, sign of walk for divinities and for the quest of eternity by the sacrifice. The next part Maguey, take place in a farm and tell the story of the “peones” who want to revenge the rape of the bride of one of them by the employer, they will be killed the day of Corpus Christi. This part evoke the social enslavement than colonisation occurred to Mexican peoples. The architecture of the walls of the farm remain to the rocks of the pyramids, is that occur another opposition in the story, between the enslavement of the Mexicans and their harmony with their religion and faith. The part Soldadera hasn’t been shoot by Eisenstein due to the budgetary restrictions, but it was supposed to follow a women during the Mexican Revolution, to make an homage of the women’s during that part of the history of Mexico. The epilogue is all about the day of the deaths, a very important party in the Mexican culture, this part emphasize about the fact than two main religions, Aztecs and Catholic, have been mix over the years, in fact, the Christian celebration of death use the old divinities of the Aztecs, using masks, the religion, imported by the conquerors, is also represented by the heads of death. The mockery of death, by dances and grotesque mimes, shows than the Mexicans people, with their story and culture, are insensitive to the oppression of death.
With the different ways of representing the national culture of Mexico, “¡Que viva Mexico” is probably one of the best example of the impact of the Mexican culture in the world of art, of the cinema and of the World, foreigners like Eisenstein, very popular and important director came to Mexico because represent the history of Mexico was one of his dreams. The national culture of Mexico don’t only have an impact in the Mexican world, but in the international also, this movie, by his importance in the world of Art and by the way he characterize the identity of Mexico in the 1930’s, is one of the best example which show the huge impact of the Mexican culture.
The Mexican culture not only influenced the culture inside the country, but also the culture all over the world and the world of Arts.