A public screening of Cecilia Aldarondo’s film You Were My First Boyfriend will be held as part of her solo exhibition Mirrored Interiors. The film will be shown at 6:30 p.m. at Images Cinema, followed by a Q&A with Aldarondo and Sally Berger, film and media arts curator, writer, and teacher.
A reception will precede the screening from 5 p.m. at WCMA. Both events are free and open to the public.
What if you could rewrite your adolescence? In this high school reunion movie turned inside out, Aldarondo embarks on a fantastical quest to reconcile her tortured teen years. She “goes back” in more ways than one, tracking down old foes and friends while also reenacting visceral memories of youthful humiliation and desire. Oscillating between present and past, hallucination and reality, You Were My First Boyfriend is a hybrid documentary that explores the power of adolescent fantasy, the subtle violence of cultural assimilation, and the fun house mirror of time’s passage. Perhaps we will all learn something about growing older and making peace with what haunts us.
Cecilia Aldarondo’s documentaries explore complex realities with themes ranging from identity, family, and memory. She is a director-producer from the Puerto Rican diaspora who works at the intersection of poetics and politics. Her feature documentaries Memories of a Penitent Heart (2016) and Landfall (2020) premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival and were co-produced by the award-winning PBS series POV. Her third feature You Were My First Boyfriend was selected for Opening Night of the 2023 South by Southwest Film Festival and will broadcast on HBO in 2023. Among Aldarondo’s fellowships and honors are the Guggenheim, a two-time MacDowell Colony Fellowship, the 2022 IDA Emerging Filmmaker Award, the 2021 New America Fellowship, and Women at Sundance 2017. In 2019 she was named to DOC NYC’s 40 Under 40 list and is one of 2015’s 25 New Faces of Independent Film. She teaches at Williams College.