The Battle of Chile, Part Two: The Coup D'Etat | Chicago Reader

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Rated NR · 88 minutes · 1976

Documentary
The second and most arresting film of Patricio Guzman's acclaimed documentary trilogy about the coup against Salvador Allende, The Coup D'Etat (1976) begins with the failed assault on the presidential palace by a renegade armored regiment in June 1973 and continues through the summer as the coup gathers force. Allende fails to win a parliamentary vote declaring a state of emergency, and his attempts to form a governing alliance with the liberal Christian Democrats are complicated by the assassination of his naval aide-de-camp. Protest marchers call for a popular militia to protect against the armed forces, but the various factions can't come up with a workable plan. Meanwhile, the military takes advantage of a previously unenforced weapons law to mount an endless series of raids against left-wing groups (in one case 200 marines touch down in a Santiago graveyard and throw open caskets in a fruitless search for guns). Finally the military, backed by the U.S. government, launches an attack on the presidential palace on September 11, 1973, and Allende dies, having promised in his last radio broadcast to "repay the loyalty of the people with my life." In Spanish with subtitles.
Director: Patricio Guzman
Writer: Patricio Guzman

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