This month Americans got a taste of something Venezuelans know well: the undermining of election results. In Venezuela, though, with 80% of households in a state of food insecurity and 85% of necessary medicine unavailable, the stakes are far higher. Premiering November 11 at the weeklong DOC NYC film festival, A La Calle (To the Street), directed and produced by Nelson Navarrete and Maxx Caicedo, offers a firsthand account of Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro’s transformation of the government from democracy to dictatorship. It also documents the people’s efforts to reclaim control of their country.
The filmmakers spent three years recording exclusive interviews with key opposition figures Leopoldo López, whose 2014 arrest and imprisonment inspired a national movement; Nixon Leal, a grassroots activist tortured by Maduro’s forces; and Federica Dávila, a medical student and co-founder of a nonprofit dedicated to treating victims of protest violence. Through their eyes viewers can see the decline of a country that was once one of Latin America’s wealthiest, and is now on the brink of economic collapse.