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‘Birds of Passage’ Trailer: Colombia’s Oscar Entry Explores the Drug Trade

"Embrace of the Serpent" director Ciro Guerra returns, with his frequent producer Cristina Gallego joining him as co-director.

“Birds of Passage”

The Orchard has released a new trailer for “Birds of Passage,” Cristina Gallego and Ciro Guerra’s follow-up to “Embrace of the Serpent.” Guerra directed that hypnotic drama, the first Colombian film ever to receive an Oscar nomination, while Gallego produced. This time around, Gallego joined Guerra behind the camera, and the pair share co-directing credits. Jose Acosta, Carmiña Martínez, and Natalia Reyes star.

Here’s the synopsis: “Torn between his desire to become a powerful man and his duty to uphold his culture’s values, Rapayet (Acosta) enters the drug trafficking business in the 1970s to secure a dowry to marry Zaida (Reyes) and finds quick success despite his tribe’s matriarch Ursula’s (Martínez) disapproval. Ignoring ancient omens, Raphayet and his family get caught up in a conflict where honor is the highest currency and debts are paid with blood.”

The film premiered at Cannes before screening at the Telluride, Toronto, and BFI London film festivals. Guerra’s next project is an adaptation of J.M. Coetzee’s “Waiting for the Barbarians” starring Robert Pattinson, Mark Rylance, and Johnny Depp.

“While it never reaches the psychedelic heights of Guerra’s previous effort and relies on a more conventional pattern of events,” IndieWire’s Eric Kohn wrote in his Cannes review, “‘Birds of Passage’ delivers another fascinating tone poem about Colombia’s fractured identity.”

The Orchard will release “Birds of Passage” in New York on February 13, 2019 and in Los Angeles two days later before expanding nationwide.

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