While director Tancrede Ramonet’s documentary Che Guevara: Beyond the Myth is yet another film on the iconic South American revolutionary, it still has its uniqueness with some previously unseen documents and little known archive footage. It certainly tried to show the events and episodes in the life of Che – away from the myth and legends that most of us read in books.
Che Guevara is one of the greatest revolutionaries in the 20th century and the poster figure for all kinds of revolution against the establishment all around the globe. There have been many books, documentaries and films depicting his life, struggle, guerilla fight and finally his death by U.S.-military-backed Bolivian forces.
Che Guevara: Beyond the Myth does not take sides, rather puts the facts on screen and explains how a common man became a mass leader with distinctive charisma, radical thoughts, and who was always on the front with his mission to lead others by examples.
You may also read The Motorcycle Diaries (2004) – a movie on the early life of “Che” Guevara.
He was a leader who was in many ways different from others – his firebrand speeches, his idea of using the media, his effort to work for hours in different factories (both on-camera and even when cameras stop rolling), and also to fight guerilla wars in different Latin America countries, certainly drew support from like-minded leaders.
The documentary also includes some on-camera testimonies that further validates the intention of the makers of the film. We always read books and articles on Che Guevara which either show the American side of the story portraying Che as a terrorist or sympathizes with any communist movement – branding Che as the symbol of anti-imperialism struggle. However, the fact that Che Guevara was executed, died young (aged 39), and his death was highlighted as a victory, kept his ideas alive.
Beyond the Myth simply highlights a few key things by telling the story of a man who created his own legend and later got himself trapped. Nevertheless, whatever our point of views are on the personality or history associated, the fact that section of people are still considering his ideas in the 21st century and more people are still talking about his fights in different parts of South America than his involvement in the killings of scores in the socialist republic of Cuba, he will certainly remain as an icon of any revolutionary movements.
Director: Tancrede Ramonet