Panorama of latin american cinema

Everybody’s got somebody but me

Todo el mundo tiene a alguien menos yo

A complicated relationship develops between Alejandra, an established literary editor, and María, a precocious student in her last year of high school. At first, the sexual chemistry creates an illusion of compatibility, however it is not long before Alejandra’s requests for candlelit dinners and conversations about books conflict with María’s desire to party until dawn. Filmed in black and white with a nod to the New Wave films of the 60s and 70s, this film has a retro visual style that cleverly mirrors the stifling pretension and hedonistic naiveté of its main characters.

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Pastorela

Everyone in the town of San Miguel Nenepilco knows that since being a boy, Agent Jesus Juárez (aka Chucho) has always represented the Devil in their traditional Pastorela (Shepherds’ Play). Hence, this Christmas all hell breaks loose when the new parish priest, the exorcist Father Mundo, gives the role to someone else. Chucho must stage an epic battle between good and evil to recover what by tradition belongs solely to him. Pastorela is a rollicking comedy that pokes fun at some of Mexico’s most time-honoured religious institutions and customs.

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Acorazado

Lately nothing has been going well for Silverio in Veracruz; his attempt to form a cooperative organization has utterly failed, and with this and other frustrations on his back, he decides to do what no Mexican he knows has ever done before: enter the United States as a Cuban refugee. His buddies help him turn his old VW Beetle into an improvised raft—which he names “el Acorazado Jarocho” (The Veracruzan Battleship)—and he sets sail for Miami. Once again, though, things don’t go quite his way.

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Fisherman

Pescador

Blanquito is thirty years old and lives with his mother in el Matal, a tiny fishing village on the ecuadorian coast. One day he arrives at work to find that packets of cocaine are washing up on the beach and joins in the scramble to collect as many as possible. When some men arrive offering to pay a handsome sum for the packets, the village residents go wild with their good fortune. However Blanquito, full of a newly found entrepreneurial spirit, decides to team up with a woman who says she knows people in the city who will pay ten times more.

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Ticket to Paradise

Boleto al paraíso

Cuba 1993: eunice, no longer able to tolerate her father’s abuse, flees her small town. She falls in with the “freakies,” a gang of hard-living street kids, who embrace her as one of their own. However, eunice once again finds herself at a crossroads when the group finds out that the local AIDS facility offers food, clothing, and shelter, and they decide they want in—whatever the cost. Boleto al paraíso presents a harsh and highly compelling chronicle of disaffected youth culture in Cuba.

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All your dead ones

Todos tus muertos

From the director of Perro come perro comes a dark comedy of gruesome proportions. Salvador is a hardworking farmer who pays little attention to the ruckus in the village caused by the mayoral election. On voting day, he heads out to work as usual, only to stumble upon a pile of corpses, like a human crop circle, dumped in the middle of his cornfield. He rushes to report the horrific discovery, only to find that the authorities are seemingly more interested in protecting their reputations than their citizens.

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Fat, bald, short man

Gordo, calvo y bajito

This highly innovative, animated film tells the story of Antonio Farfán, a middle-aged man who works in a notary office. He believes that his dull personal and professional life is the result of his looks: being fat, bald and short. One day his new boss arrives: a fatter, balder and shorter man who, unlike Antonio, is both successful in his career and happily married. In spite of Antonio’s deep-seated shyness and insecurity, he can’t help but see that it is time for things to change. The question is: How is he going to do it?

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Young & Wild

Joven y Alocada

Daniela is an angst-ridden 17-year-old who finds that her raging sexual drive is difficult to reconcile with the orders of her religion and the expectations of her well-to-do, evangelical family. With no outlet for her desire, Daniela taps into an online network of other restless teenagers through her sexually charged blog. In addition to being a playful, energetic and, at times, uncomfortably explicit coming-of-age story, Joven y Alocada is fresh and innovative in its format.

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Heleno

José Henrique Fonseca crafts an ambitious and long overdue homage to a central icon in Brazil’s 20th century history. Reminiscent of film noir classics, the biopic tells the glorious and tragic story of the legendary football striker Heleno de Freitas. The sumptuous black and white cinematography reflects the chic life of Rio de Janeiro in the 1940s as it fell under the spell of sports royalty.

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Curfew

Toque de queda

In fear of an eventual invasion by those infected by violence, the neighbours of Villas de La esperanza arm themselves and share night patrols, risking their lives for the safety of their families. But battling violence with violence only spreads the contagion, and the neighbours will realize that the greatest danger is not what lurks outside their secure, gated community; the real danger lies within. In Guatemala violence is contagious, and we are all infected. The inauguration of Casa Comal in 2006 represented an important step forward for the film community in Central America.

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