There is also the theme of the responsibility of the people of the nation. In these films, there are those characters who are activists and they are determined to protect other citizens and enlighten them more on their rights and obligations. The movies are about the role of responsible citizens when they realize what has been happening around their small world. It depicts the consequences of ignorance to what is happening in the surroundings. After Chava’s father left, he was left with the responsibility of the head of the house at his tender age. In the film, Romero, the archbishop is determined to take up his responsibility and die for the sake of the people. This is especially so where bullets are fired by a soldier in the church,, but he is not intimated by the bullets but he was to get rid of the army from the church. In the film, missing the father and wife of the journalist set out in search of the journalist who had disappeared. This was their responsibility since he was one of them. The journalist in the film, Salvador spoke to talk to soldiers and asked them to stop harassing the locals.
Besides, in comparison, the movies use human characters to depict the oppression of the government. In the film official story, the main characters are Alicia, Roberto, Gaby and the grandmother, while in the film innocent voices, the main character is Chava. In the film missing and Salvador, the main characters are the journalists while in Romero the character is the bishop. They are used to further the themes of the films as we are taken through their lives and times. In the official story we see the urge and the desire of the foster parent, Alicia, trying to search the parents of Gaby, the adopted daughter, who are believed to have been prisoners of war. There is also Ana, who makes the viewers understand the extent of the abuse of human rights done by the government through torture and imprisonment. The official story is cast in Argentina while an innocent voice is in Chile. Both films were cast in times of civil war that locked these countries in the 1980’s.
The films show the misuse of government resources in the fight against the fellow citizens. They show how the government uses state machinery to oppress its citizens. In both movies citizens were taken away by the military and tortured. In the movie, the official story a friend of Alicia had been taken away by the government and tortured before she went into flew. On the other hand, Chava’s father fled their home and left for United States. At some point he had joined the guerrilla warfare to fight the communist government. In the film, the official story, Alicia decided to get acquainted with the happenings around her so that she could understand why the government was oppressing its citizens.
Also in the films, it shows how the citizens are not aware of what is happening in their surroundings. They are much engrossed in their activities in their villages that they are ignorant of their surrounding. The other common theme about the films is that it shows a relentless effort in pursuit of truth, justice and peace in favor of the self interests. Alicia is depicted as a true heroine out to fight for the rights of all people. She is shown as a morally upright person who is out to reach for the moral course no matter what it costs her. She is ready to lose all she has in search of truth including her wealth, family, marriage and position. On the other hand, Chava is depicted as a tool for seeking justice especially to young boys. He is used to show his pursuit for the truth and liberty from being forced into the army through his cunning methods of helping others and himself avoid the army when it came hunting for them in schools. At one point he said he was afraid of being 12 years of age because he never wanted to join the army and his greatest fear was that once he and his friends turn 12 they would be forcibly be recruited in the army.
The other theme shown is that of political activities that lead to many atrocities such as murder, torture, rape and the stealing of children and forced labor. In the film, official story, many people were murdered and scores injured and raped. Others like Ana were forced fly to save their lives, while in the film innocent voices, children would be forced into the army against their wishes, and property destroyed and stolen while still people were forced to run away from their homes just like Chava’s dad was forced flee. Both films are about revolution, and the citizens are determined to get a revolution at whatever cost.
The difference between the movies is that official story is set within a middle level family who are employed while the film innocent voices, is set in an impoverished village with low income earners. The movies Salvador and missing represent a real life experience of the journalists. The other difference is that, although some of them have a political setting, the film official story, is a more political film than innocent voices where the political activities represents the background. The film Romero takes a more religious way of attacking the problems facing the citizens as opposed to others which are political.