In Focus: Jorge Acha

 

In the history of cinema there are venerable names and golden eras as well as footnotes and forgotten names. Among the latter is the Argentine filmmaker Jorge Acha, who died at the age of 49. He was an exceptional painter, wrote about cinema and made three remarkable feature films between 1986 and 1992. The syntax of these works breaks completely with classical linearity and aesthetic measure. Instead, his films combine various episodes that can be associated with a specific situation: the imprisonment of a political prisoner (HABEAS CORPUS), the lunacy of a nationalist project (STANDARD), and the journey into the jungle in search of knowledge (MBURUCUYÁ). In all three cases, the actual story turns out to be an unfulfilled promise, and is superimposed by a sensual intensity that primarily serves to express the emotions of the protagonists. The name of Jorge Acha is usually missing in encyclopedias and in Argentinean or Latin-American film lessons. He is one of the greatest secrets of Argentine cinema. His premature death also meant the premature end to a body of work that could have been of great influence. In any case, its relevance is evidenced by its formal sophistication and the unique conceptual interests expressed therein.