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24 days to watch
4.1
293 Ratings

Araya

Directed by Margot Benacerraf
France, 1959
Documentary
  • Spanish
  • English

Synopsis

The peninsula of Araya in Venezuela is one of the most arid places on earth. Since its discovery by the Spanish 500 years ago, the region’s salt has been exploited manually. Three stories underline the harsh life of this region—all of which vanished with the arrival of industrial exploitation.

Our take

In 1959 Hiroshima, mon amour shared a top award from Cannes with a Venezuelan film of matched accomplishment in pure cinema–and that film is Araya. A document of remnants of the pre-industrialized world, Araya is a breathtaking reinvention of documentary as something both political and mystical.

Araya Directed by Margot Benacerraf Watch now
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Awards & Festivals

Cannes Film Festival

1959

Berlin International Film Festival

2009

BFI London Film Festival

2009

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