Alice Dryden (huskyteer) wrote,
Alice Dryden
huskyteer

Our Movies In Havana

I didn't deliberately set out to watch two films set in Cuba quite close together, but my subconscious had other ideas.

I hadn't seen the 1959 film of Our Man in Havana, even though I love both the novel and Noël Coward, who plays intelligence agent Hawthorne. I caught up with it over the weekend and enjoyed it very much; it's faithful to the book, with a lot of humour. Highlight: the drawing of an entirely fictitious atomic weapon that happens to look a lot like a vacuum cleaner.

Last night I picked Buena Vista Social Club from the BFI Player because I like Ry Cooder and Wim Wenders; I hadn't listened to the album, although I'm rectifying that right now on Spotify (it's GREAT).

It's a lovely film, introducing the Cuban musicians Cooder brought together, some of whom hadn't played for years and had been all but forgotten, showing us their homes and daily lives, then following them to New York and their performance at Carnegie Hall. Everything one has heard about Cuba is here: shabby plaster and bright paint, cigars and guitars and old American cars.

Maybe I should complete the Cuban trilogy with Die Another Day. Or maybe not.
Tags: films
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  • 4 comments
I am going to have to look up the film of "Our Man in Havana", the book is certainly an interesting snapshot of the last years of pre-revolution Cuba.
It's also interesting to compare with John Le Carré's The Tailor of Panama (both book and film), which is a more modern take on a similar story.
Not sure if I have that. Le Carre isn't exactly what you call easy reading.
This one's quite fun - I prefer his standalone stuff to the Smiley ones. The Night Manager is also pretty light, as if he was consciously trying to write something a bit like a Bond novel.