Marilyn Solaya’s Vestido de novia [Wedding Dress (Cuba /Spain, 2014)] has been classified as an LGBT drama. The synopsis says: “In 90’s Havana, a nurse and a home builder hopelessly in love, live happily married. A circumstantial fact of her past life will put their feelings to test and undermine the most elemental principles.”
In her review “Vidas amputadas: Sobre Vestido de Novia, la película de Marilyn Solaya” [Amputated Lives: On Wedding Dress, a film by Marilyn Solaya] Danae C. Diéguez writes:
Vestido de novia is a film in which a love story becomes a discourse on the nation; it goes from the minimum to the macro. The story of Rosa Elena, a person who has been reassigned to another biological sex and is constructed as a woman through the most traditional teachings on femininity, is the storyline that triggers the latent ideas in this cinematic project. However, I would vindicate the anecdotal as symbol of a conflict that transcends those personal stories and presents a proposal that makes the film an intense work that transcends us, as humans, to confront public policy, societies that still maintain the hypocrisy and speak on behalf of a rarely consulted truth.
The women and men in this story have learned to live from the perspective of the prison of these corseted teachings on gender and, of course, are the victims of it. Vestido de novia marks the difference when the point of view is verified by its director—in this case, script writer as well—about how we socialize women and men to benefit a system of patriarchal domination that legitimizes and maintains inequities. In my view, herein lies the difference or most important pivotal point for this film in the context of Cuban cinema that has addressed the issue: Marilyn does not support discourses of tolerance, she knows that the one who “tolerates” and the one who is “tolerated” mark a relationship of power; she does not sugar-coat it; she is not complacent. She goes straight to the cause of those lies, her characters are barely saved from collapse because, with her film, she demands respect, diversity, and love above all absurd social pressures that only generate double lives or perhaps amputated lives.
[. . .] See full review in the link below.
Marilyn Solaya is a Cuban actress, scriptwriter, director and producer. She was born in Havana in 1970. She got a degree in film directing from the School of Audiovisual Communication at the Superior Institute of Art [Instituto Superior de Arte (ISA)] in Havana. She also studied drama at the National Art School. She started her career in cinema as an actress, playing Vivian; David´s girlfriend in the critically acclaimed Cuban film Strawbery and Chocolate by Tomás Gutiérrez Alea and Juan Carlos Tabío (1993). She also worked in the Argentine film Despabílate amor (1996), by Eliseo Subiela; in the Canadian production Omerta III, La Ley del silencio; and the Chilean Sensible, by Francisco Hervé, both in 1998.
Her debut as director was with the short Alegrías in 1999. She then wrote the script and directed the documentary En el cuerpo equivocado (2010), co-directed the documentary Retamar (2004), and wrote and directed Mírame mi amor (2002) and Hasta que la muerte nos separe (2000), among other documentaries. Vestido de novia is her first narrative feature.
See full review by Danae C. Diéguez (in Spanish) at http://www.lajiribilla.cu/articulo/9356/vidas-amputadas-sobre-vestido-de-novia-la-pelicula-de-marilyn-solaya
For more information, see http://www.habanerofilmsales.com/