A young boy, in an effort to have a normal childhood in 1980’s El Salvador, is caught up in a dramatic fight for his life as he desperately tries to avoid the war which is raging all around him.
I just saw this film (World Premiere)the final day of the Toronto International Film Festival on September 18. It is in Spanish with English subtitles. The film, set in El Salvador during the years of civil war in the ’80s, is told through the voice and eyes of 11-year old Chava. He lives with his mother, two brothers and a sister in a cardboard-house in a village, and at age 12 will be ‘eligible’ to be taken into the “ejercito” (army). The acting is superb-both principals and supporting cast- as is the directing and pacing. This film will leave you moved both to tears and to admiration for the human spirit. Though the two hours seemed to pass in minutes, thinking about this film will last for many years. I really felt I was present “on the set”. Both the director(Luis Mandoki) and the screenplay writer(Oscar Torres, who was the boy in the film) were present for an emotional and uplifting Q&A. I could only give this film a 10 and hope it will be distributed in as many countries as possible.
Director: Luis Mandoki
Writers: Luis Mandoki (screenplay) Oscar Orlando Torres (screenplay)
Stars: Carlos Padilla, Leonor Varela, Xuna Primus
Release date: November 4, 2005 (United States)
Countries of origin: Mexico, United States, Puerto Rico
Filming locations: Mexico
Format : MPEG-4
Format profile : Base Media
Codec ID : isom (isom/iso2/avc1/mp41)
File size : 2.04 GiB
Duration : 1 h 50 min
Overall bit rate : 2 638 kb/s