IDFA: Radio Silence

IDFA: Radio Silence

The well-known Mexican radio host and journalist Carmen Aristegui is fighting against fake news, government corruption and the related drugs trade. When her radio station fired her in 2015, she started her own channel and continued broadcasting online, where she now has around 18 million listeners.

The camera follows the engaging and cheerful journalist as she goes about her work. The direct cinema scenes alternate with conversations with Carmen and her colleagues. Meanwhile, the terrifying and brutal reality of politics in Mexico becomes palpable when there’s a violent break-in at her office and another defiant radio journalist is murdered. “Would you be prepared to die for this job?” asks director Juliana Fanjul. “No one should die because of his job” answers one of Carmen’s colleagues.

Could it be that social media is Aristegui’s best protection? She’s so popular that eradicating her would start an uprising. This powerful portrait of an uncommonly courageous and tenacious woman makes it very clear what you get when the freedom of the press is crushed: no rule of law and a crumbling democracy.

Extended Q&A with director Juliana Fanjul and journalist Carmen Aristegui – the film’s main character – and a guest speaker (tba) moderated by IDFA programmer María Campaña Ramia. In Mexico, where corruption, violence and oppression prevail, independent journalism is invaluable. How can further restrictions to independent journalism be prevented?

Part of IDFA x De Balie Doc Talks.


Juliana FanjulFilmmaker
Carmen AristeguiJournalist and Main Character
María Campaña RamiaModerator