Letters from the Park (Cartas del Parque)

Institute History

  • 1989 Sundance Film Festival


In this story, as in any self-respecting love story, however simple, there is at least one triangle: Pedro, Juan and Maria move in a world not entirely estranged from our own. Thus, we are able to share their feelings, to feel sorrow and joy as they do. Nevertheless, the distance between us and them allows us to do so in a lighthearted way. The story takes place in Matanzas City, 100 kilometers east of Havana, in 1913. Two lovers enlist the services of the same clerk—each of his/her own accord, and without the other’s knowledge—to transmit their feelings to their beloved in letters the clerk pens for them. However, little by little, the clerk’s feelings prevail, much against his will, and reveal an eternal truth: love cannot be tricked. In this game, it is live that calls the tune.

I had always wanted to make a film that is a plain love story, a story where conflicting emotions surface, where reason is forced to take its place opposite mystery and life. Now that the years aweigh heavily on me,. I did not want to let this chance slip by, the chance to amuse myself with such a story: for lack of other merits, I’ve lived my life to the full. When I contemplate that universe of flowers, shiny postcards, embroidered hearts and whimsical angels, whose arrows don’t always hit the right target, perhaps experience helps me enjoy it to the full and understand it better, since I see it from a prudent distance. This is a fascinating universe, where poetry is revealed as the common denominator of the marvelous inventions that have shaped this century, and of the greatest discovery of all times: love.

— Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Screening Details

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