Bless Me, Ultima

In a village in New Mexico, the life of young farm boy Antonio is dramatically changed when an old medicine woman joins his household. This affecting coming-of-age tale recounts Antonio’s experiences to reveal the spiritual conflict in his community.

Days of Grace

Set in Mexico City over twelve years, benchmarked by the World Cup 2002, 2006 and 2010, the film follows three very disparate lives that intersect as they are impacted by violence and abduction. Lupe (Tenoch Huerta), an idealistic cop, is tasked to investigate a crime ring and finds that justice has no value when a human life has a price. When Susana’s (Dolores Heredia) businessman-husband Arturo is taken, she must go outside the law to fight for his release. And Iguana (Kristyan Ferrer) is conflicted as he dreams of becoming a boxer even as he is drawn into a lifestyle that finds him guarding kidnap Victim X (Carlos Bardem) and facing down a criminal mastermind.

The Cinema Hold Up

Negus, Chale, Sapo, and Chata are teenagers living in Mexico’s Guerrero colony. Friends since childhood, they have too much time on their hands and spend most of it drowning their problems in a constant haze of marijuana, lusting after the opposite sex, and hanging out at skate parks, graffiti hot spots, and hip-hop jam sessions. One day, inspired by the pain of empty pockets and the crush against the gritty boundary between adolescence and adulthood, the foursome have a massive brainstorm that will solve all of their problems—they decide to rob the local cinema. Each finds his or her reason to go ahead with the caper, unaware that the ordeal may threaten the only thing they have—their friendship.

“The Cinema Hold Up” is a vibrant, authentic, and wonderfully observed portrait of the tempo and texture of today’s Mexican youth culture. First-time feature director Iria Gómez Concheiro draws pitch-perfect performances from the talented ensemble cast and registers a strong and original voice in Mexican cinema. [Synopsis provided by the Sundance Institute]

Two Men in Town

A small town in Texas surrounded by desert which, time and again as the day breaks, disgorges an increasing number of Mexicans who have either been murdered or have died of thirst. A convict is released from prison. Thanks to his new-found Muslim faith, William Garnett’s behaviour has been exemplary and, with the aid of a sympathetic parole officer, he begins a new life in the town. But his past is well-known and before long, a sheriff bent on revenge and an ex-crony from the underworld are both breathing down his neck. (Synopsis courtesy of Berlin International Film Festival)