Martha-Cecilia Dietrich

Grant Type

Fejos Postdoctoral Fellowship

Institutional Affiliation

Bern, U. of

Grant number

Gr. 9507

Approve Date

October 4, 2017

Project Title

Dietrich, Dr. Martha-Cecilia, U. of Bern, Bern, Switzerland - To aid filmmaking on 'An Audio-visual Analysis of Oral Histories and Storytelling in the Emerging Horror Film Industry of the Central Peruvian Highlands' - Fellowship Postdoctoral Fellowshp

Horror in the Andes’ is a documentary based on a two-year long investigation into the local horror film production in the Peruvian highlands and the films’ rising popularity among local audiences. The film to be made during this fellowship follows three filmmakers Martin, Lucho and Carlitos and their adventurous journey whilst shooting a horror movie in the small town of Ayacucho. Like many other filmmakers in this region, they are descendants of indigenous Quechua people, who moved to the city of Ayacucho during the internal armed conflict (1980-2000). Their enthusiasm for filmmaking has drawn them together. They like to think of their films as ‘peliculas con valor social’ (films with social value), because they address social issues traditionally considered taboo. The documentary aims to show how Andean horror films have become a catalyst for social critique. They address uncomfortable subjects with wit and creativity. The Spanish conquista, the power of the Catholic Church, social inequality, corruption and modern slavery are all subjects that have been dealt with in this way. Most significantly for this region, the films address the tangible effects of the most recent violence between insurgents, state forces and local communities during the armed conflict, which according to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission hit the indigenous community of Ayacucho the hardest. ‘Horror in the Andes’ explores the genre of horror films as both artistic practice and social critique. The film’s narrative follows a horror film in the making and tells the deeply moving story of a friendship that is held together by a passion for filmmaking. The film will draw out key findings of my research and explore how violence continues to shape a society even long after the fighting has ceased.