Date of Submission
Academic Programs and Concentrations
Film and Electronic Arts
Project Advisor 1
An Acquaintance of Interest was born out of the combination of two elements:
1. A love/hate relationship of Latin American politics. Complete with its
extremes, and rationale-defying histories.
2. An absolute love for portrayals of political intrigue and espionage in both
fiction and non-fiction media.
For me, An Acquaintance of Interest serves as a form of release from political
impotence. An impotence that fills me in equal terms with anger and hope; anger at
the current state of the region, and the unfortunate cast of characters that either
by total ignorance, or facetious compliance, promote and perpetuate the worst
idiosyncrasies of the Latin American political mindset. And a hope that one day we
can overcome these idiosyncrasies, and that we can see past the Cold War-era
narratives that still dictate (or rather, are maliciously used to manipulate) the
An Acquaintance of Interest represents freedom from years of internal tension
between unbridled political idealism, and acid cynicism: two emotions that
perfectly describe my relationship with Latin American politics, and two emotions
portrayed by the characters of Lucas and Rodrigo in the film.
The narrative of the film was created with these emotions in mind, and mixed with
specific sensibilities and forms of the much-beloved espionage and political
intrigue genres. Said genres have been vital in my formation as a filmmaker,
especially that of the espionage film, which I consider one of the purest forms of
cinema, due to the endless possibilities of deception and narrative heft that can be
carried out through visual language and dialogue in film.
In An Acquaintance of Interest, there are traces of Ian Fleming’s Bond escapism, as
well as the complexities and linguistic nuances of John LeCarré. Graham Greene’s
Our Man in Havana provides the basic plot through-line, as well as some of the
small, specific moments of humour in the film. The results never veer to the campy,
adventurous form of a Bond film, but they also do not cross the super bleak,
borderline a-cinematic world of Le Carré espionage. It merely attempts to
underline the “magical” , as Gabriel Garcia Marquez would put it, qualities of Latin
American politics and history: A history of contradictions, deceptions, devotions,
and an endless string of “what ifs”, stretching from the Panama Canal, and all of its
geopolitical importance, to Ushuaia; a city still reeling from the trauma of the
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Márquez Todeschini, Diego, "An Acquaintance of Interest" (2019). Senior Projects Spring 2019. 38.
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