WATCH FROM HOME—The Pearl Button
(El botón de nácar)
In this poetic film, Patricio Guzmán continues his excavation of Chile’s hidden past, fluidly shifting between the cosmic and the particular. Like his 2010 film essay Nostalgia for the Light and his most recent work, The Cordillera of Dreams, The Pearl Button beautifully weaves together strands of history and of natural history. Here Guzmán probes the significance of water in order to reflect both on the decimation of the indigenous people of Patagonia—the nomadic Kawésqar or “water people”—as a result of European colonization and on the brutality of the Pinochet regime, decades later, that dropped victims into the sea from the air.