Early on June 21, 2009, Iranian-born journalist Maziar Bahari was awakened at his mother's home in Tehran, charged with espionage, and placed in solitary confinement in Evin prison. Covering the 2009 Iranian presidential election for Newsweek, Bahari documented protests after Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was declared the victor with 62% of the vote, his nearest rival, Mir-Hassein Mousavi reported with 34%.
Chile, 1988, held a most unusual plebiscite: vote "yes" or "no" to continue for eight more years the rule of dictator Augusto Pinochet. Having come to power in 1973 in a CIA-backed, military coup, Pinochet has reluctantly yielded to international pressure to hold this referendum, certain he'll win. 97% of the population turned out.
Juxtaposing making a movie in Bolivia on Columbus' arrival in the New World with modern-day protests over water rights, Even the Rain wears its politics boldly; that is, it critiques comparable fifteenth century and 21st-century exploitation. Then, Columbus demands gold from the Indians and brutally suppresses any resistance; today, a miserly film producer takes advantage of the indigenous population.