Juan Francisco González / Chile, France, Switzerland / 2022 / 15 min / Colour

In the Chilean Atacama desert are the vestiges of the last salitreras, the saltpeter deposits where thousands of poor families clung to the hope of work, resulting in more than a century of exploitation: a massacre that numbered more than 2,000 victims due to hard working conditions, miserable wages, and poor sanitation conditions. Between 1890 and 1925, the country reached the apex of the nitrate mining era, but the poor working conditions in the large saltpeter refineries outlined the underlying causes of the "social question", during which demonstrations and strikes against the social problems of the working and non-working classes took place. Today, the inhabitants witness the decline of the industrialization of saltpetre in the driest place on Earth, in the midst of real ghost towns, of which it remains an indissoluble memory.

  • Juan Francisco González

    Juan Francisco González

    Juan Francisco González was born in 1989 in Punta Arenas, Chile. He studied cinema at EICTV (San Antonio de los Baños, Cuba) and at Ateliers Varan, Paris. He is co-director of the documentaries Propaganda (2014) and Dios (2019), awarded a prize at Visions du Réel. Since 2018 he has been a director and producer at DOCLA. He has conducted workshops in Chile, Peru and France. Fantasmagorìa (2022) was also presented in Europe at the Doclisboa Festival Internacional de Cinema 2022.


Screenplay Juan Francisco González, Mariana CamelioCinematography Juan Francisco GonzálezSound Diego AguilarEditing Juan Francisco GonzálezMusic Nova MateriaMain cast Daniel Antivilo Production company DOCLA


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