A Useful Life
(La vida útil)

Director in Person
$12 Special Event Tickets
Directed by Federico Veiroj.
With Jorge Jellinek, Manuel Martínez Carril, Paola Venditto.
Uruguay, 2010, 35mm, black & white, 67 min.
Spanish with English subtitles.

A deceptively straightforward parable lies at the heart of this tender and delicate film about the triangular relationship among the moviegoer, daily life and the cinema. Cinephiles curious about the day-to-day tasks of a film programmer will be fascinated by A Useful Life’s behind-the-scenes look at the Uruguayan Cinematheque as it strives to keep its doors open. Ultimately the film comes to focus on the struggle of a middle-aged curator to define himself outside of the office—meaning, in this case, outside the movie theater. Veiroj’s composition of the frame and his use of editing and mise-en-scène recall the filmmaking of the mid-twentieth century, somewhere between prewar classical style and the revolutions of the New Waves, a period that retained a touching curiosity about the world and a robust faith in cinema’s ability to explore everyday reality.


  • Too Much Diving

    Directed by Federico Veiroj.
    US/Uruguay, 1998, DCP, black & white, 3 min.
    DCP source: Viennale
  • I Just Wanted to Taste a Real Burger

    Directed by Federico Veiroj & Omer Avarkan.
    US/Uruguay, 1998, DCP, color, 4 min.
    Japanese with English subtitles.
    DCP source: Viennale

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Federico Veiroj, Epiphany and Ellipsis

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