Zama (2017) centers on a Spanish colonial administrator who was born in South America. The title character waits for a letter from the Spanish king that would grant him a transfer from the small town in which he is stagnating to Buenos Aires. Zama’s situation is delicate, and he must ensure that nothing interferes with his transfer. He is forced to submissively accept every task entrusted to him by successive Governors, who come and go as he stays behind. When Zama finally realizes that no letter is coming, he joins a party of soldiers in pursuing a dangerous bandit. Based Antonio Di Benedetto’s 1956 novel of the same name, Zama has been described as “beautiful, hypnotic, mysterious and elliptical.”
Eloi Grasset (Spanish and Portuguese, UCSB) will join moderator Cristina Venegas(Film and Media Studies, UCSB) for a post-screening discussion.