17 June, 2009
The highly controversial political film written and directed by vagabond took the UK by storm!
MACHETERO’s European Premiere in the Swansea Bay Film Festival in Wales took home the Award for Best Film – USA. The film is an exploration into the use of violence as a means towards liberation using the specific example of the island nation of Puerto Rico as springboard to delve into the broader and more complex implications of ongoing struggles against colonialism in general.
The micro budget film stars Issach de Bankolé, (The Limits Of Control, Ghost Dog, The Keeper) Not4Prophet (of the Puerto Punk band RICANSTRUCTION and Hip-Hop group X-VANDALS), Kelvin Fernandez, (in his first starring role) and Dylcia Pagan (who served 20 years in US prisons for trying to free her country Puerto Rico) and features a completely improvised score by RICANSTRUCTION.
After winning in Wales, vagabond continued the next week to Tamworth, England to the Heart Of England International Film Festival where MACHETERO went on to win Best First Film – USA. When vagabond won the award he said, “This award is not just an award for me and those who worked on the film but is an act of solidarity towards all those who are working for the independence of Puerto Rico”. The film seems to be working well as a means of educating people on the United States colonial relationship with Puerto Rico. “People have been coming up to me and saying that they never realized that Puerto Rico was a colony of the United States,” says vagabond, “so the film is not a personal artistic endeavor but it’s informing people and getting them to think about a situation they never knew existed, I can’t think of a higher compliment.”
Since last June at the Hollywood Black Film Festival MACHETERO been nominated 4 times. With vagabond’s previous Award for Best First Film in the International Film Festival South Africa last October the two wins in the UK bring MACHETERO’s current Award count to three. A momentum seems to be gathering for MACHETERO.
For more information on the film and it’s recent award vagabond will be available for interviews. Video clips of the film can be made available to web and television outlets with audio clips available for radio outlets.