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Cosford screening: Tony Manero

9:00 pm
5:00 pm
4:00 pm

With a tone all its own, this film manages to be three things at once: a portrait of life lived under a dictatorship, a bitter critique of an individual who will do anything to reach his goal, and a blackly comic satire of celebrity obsession. Raul Peralta (Alfredo Castro) is a 50-something man who lives in Santiago during the fearful, suffocating days of Augusto Pinochet’s rule.

Raul is obsessed with John Travolta’s character from Saturday Night Fever–hence the film’s title–to the point where he’s even bought a white suit similar to Manero’s. Each weekend, he performs with a group of dancers at a bar, recreating the moves from his favorite movie. He finds an even more important purpose when a television station announces that they’re holding a Tony Manero dance- and look-alike contest. In such a stifling social climate, Raul takes matters into his own hands, doing whatever it takes to make his dream come true. The tone of Tony Manero is virtually impossible to describe, for the film’s most brutal moments are actually its funniest. Tony Manero is a startlingly original achievement, marking Lorrain as a director to watch in the future.

The film is in Spanish with English subtitiles. Admission is $6 for all UM alumni, faculty, and staff, and is free for students. General admission is $8. The film screens on Friday, August 21 at 9  p.m., Saturday, August 22 at 5  and 9 p.m., and Sunday, August 23 at 4 and 8 p.m. For more information visit

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