Open Air Cinema Foundation celebrates the Day of the Dead in Mexico

Words by Claudia G Covarrubias, Editor: Vladimir Cortez

As part of the celebration of the Day of the Dead, Cine Bajo el Cielo, a partner of Open Air Cinema Foundation, together with non-profit organizations Cambio de Juego, Pedaliers Desarrollo Ciclista, and Morbido, a horror film festival, organized a night bike ride and a screening of short horror films.
Day of the Dead in Mexico
The films screened, Baskin (2013), Canis (2014) and Waterborne (2014), were a selection of some of the most terrifying flicks international cinema has on offer these days.

Zombie Kangaroo, hungry wolves and strange cults provoked screams and surprises among the spectators. The Day of the Dead is one of the most emblematic celebrations of Mexico. The indigenous tradition is mixed with the Spanish one to celebrate the day when the dead come to visit us. For three days, altars are covered with cempasúchil, a Mexican traditional yellow flower, and food is placed to receive them and keep company to them.
Celebrating Day of the Dead in Mexico
Cyclists who participated in the bike ride were dressed as Skeletons, Catrinas, famous painter Frida Kahlo, comic film actor Cantinflas (Charlie Chaplin once commented that he was the best comedian alive). ... All these characters that represent Mexico. The bike ride started in Parque de los Venados -- a park located in the south of Mexico City -- and continued all the way to the house fortress of Indio Fernandez, one of the most emblematic places of Mexican cinema. This is where the horror shorts screening took place.

Emilio Fernandez Romo, better known as El Indio, was director, actor and producer of the golden age of Mexican cinema. It is said that at the request of his wife, Dolores, El Indio posed naked to create the statuette that Cedric Gibbons was designing for the Oscars. In 1945 El Indio began to build his house, a fortress where his remains lie, which is now a museum and cultural center.

Each year the celebration of Day of the Dead is honoring the memory of him with a special altar and other altars for artists of Mexican cinema. The screening was accompanied by burning candles which light illuminates the path of the dead for them to reunite with us. On that night, at the screening of Cine Bajo el Cielo, El Indio and other stars of Mexican cinema were watching horror shorts with us.

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