Tiff Reviews – Blanquita

Portrait of the protagonist Blanquita

Blanquita is the name of the movie and the name of the protagonist, an 18 years old girl living in a shelter with her baby and going through a trial accusing rich and powerful politicians of rape to fight for justice. Blanquita is the first thing you see on the screen, calmly holding her baby. Next, she opens the door entering complete chaos, and like this, the whole story begins.

Since she is the only one in this shelter full of kids that suffer from years of violence and abuse, who is mentally capable of undertaking a criminal investigation as the psychologists claim, she decides to make her case public by accusing Congressmen Enrique Vazquez of continuously raping her for a year. She is getting supported by the shelter administrator Manuel who seeks out authorities for her who can help her to find justice.

Throughout the movie, it becomes increasingly confusing what actually happened, who exactly was affected and how trustworthy Blanquita’s really story is. The line between what’s real and what is made up vanishes into a complicated mix full of truths, half-truths and lies and people involved in this investigation begin to form doubts. The seek for justice, which seems so easy and empowering in the beginning, begins to become hard and complicated, facing these many nuances and side stories all coming together in this trial. But what is totally clear in all this chaos is the corruption of the government covering all these rapists systematically. Whether it be in the first step with the psychological analysis of the abused teenagers, that use their mental state as an excuse to not even begin a trial, or in the middle of the court case when the accused rapists use all the power and money they have to scare Blanquita and Manuel. Even the police are not doing their job of protecting the citizen and acting with integrity since, after a raid, a sex tape got released that could only be in their hands.
In addition to this also the church is involved since Manuel is a priest. In a talk between him and a cardinal, he urgently pushes Manuel to with-drawl and stop this whole case, apparently because he just wants to play the good prophet, and it causes more harm to the reputation of the church than good. But it’s easy to understand, and the cardinal also openly says that his real motive is the money he gets from this Congress man and all the other men involved in this scandal.

Corruption is a central topic of the movie but what’s more important is the perspective the story is narrated from: a victim of rape going through all this investigation. Blanquita is a very complex character that is hard to pin down to some character traits. Oftentimes it’s just a closeup of her face on the screen, and she is all silent, but you can see how she is processing all the emotions. In another very important scene, when she gets dressed and all the scars on her back become visible, you can clearly see everything she went through, and it is also a very vulnerable moment. While she was full of hope in the beginning, she slowly began to lose the energy and motivation to keep up with her story and became frustrated. Her desperate words, “They can rape, but I can’t lie”, which are at the same time full of anger, sum up the injustice and discrimination pretty well. While a lie can make her go to jail, those with filthy hands get away easily without facing any consequences and can continue committing their crimes.
At this point, I also want to state a trigger warning. Even though abuse is never explicitly shown during the movie, you witness it through the reports of the victims, which can be almost equally hard to go through. Because it’s not a fantasy movie detached from reality, it’s based on true events, and sexual violence against women, children, and men is the fucking reality.

To sum it up, I can definitely say that it is a movie that is 100% worth watching. During the whole 99 minutes, it never gets a second boring, and I think seeing these things from the victim’s perspective is always relevant and raises awareness for this never-ending issue, which cannot be stressed enough.

________________________

Blanquita is a Chilean-Mexican-Luxembourgish-French-Polish film written and directed by Fernando Guzzoni.

Post Author: Carolin Kretzer

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.