Julio Palacio – Director, editor & DP
Taaneya Balaji – Compositing & Graphics
This year, my talented friend asked me to work on his beautiful film set in Havana, Cuba. As described by Julio:
In mid-June, I had the opportunity to travel to Cuba for the first time. I knew enough about the revolution and the change Cuba had in the 50s, but I was not really sure what to expect. Many people said that going to Cuba was almost like traveling back in time, and in my experience that is the case, the architecture, the old American cars, the old melancholic music, among many other things, but Cuba is way more complicated than that. This is not a travel video, it is more of a lifestyle film that captures what I perceived to be the essence of Havana and its people; many of which have very contradicting feelings about their own country. When I came back to edit, I thought I wanted the film to be in black and white, to represent that feeling of the old Havana, the luxurious, glamorous city from the 50s, but being there and seeing all of the beautiful colors and understanding the culture and how much flavor they have, it did not feel right. After talking to a few filmmaker friends, and telling them about my experience there, we came to the conclusion that Cuba is in fact trapped in the past, but its people have so much hope for the future, so much drive to keep going, even in the face of many social problems.
A better representation of this feeling was to have a mix of both B&W and Color, highlighting certain areas of the frame in B&W while keeping the beautiful colors of this amazing place. Having this mix plus the beautiful soundtrack reinforces that feeling of Nostalgia that possesses the city, and seeing the people go on with their daily lives, their faces, and how they keep moving forward, represents the hope that everyone I met there still has. This is “A Day in Havana”.