7.9/10
114
1 user 9 critic

Tempestad (2016)

The emotional journeys of two women victimized by corruption and injustice in Mexico and of the love, dignity and resistance that allowed them to survive.

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6 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Storyline

Two women, a voyage in two voices, which, like reflections of a single echo, convey what fear means in the life of a human being. Highways, landscapes, gazes. Mexico from north to south in an era when violence has taken control of our lives, our desires and our dreams. An emotional and evocative journey, steeped not only in loss and pain, but also love, dignity and resistance.

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2 April 2017 (USA)  »

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Stürmisches Land  »

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1.85 : 1
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Beautiful and poetic documentary with some lengths
4 March 2016 | by See all my reviews

Tempestad is a poetic documentary by young director Tatiana Huezo, who comes from El Salvador, but lives and works in Mexico City. The film deals with the victims of innocent imprisonments in Mexico, pagadores(payers), who go to prison instead of real perpetrators like human traffickers. This is often covered by the media and supposed to calm the population. The movie, which was selected for 2016's Berlinale film festival, depicts what is behind all this show: real, suffering humans. Two women tell their stories. Their voices and a melancholic string score accompany the more or less re-enacted bus travel of young woman Miriam from the prison in the north of Mexico to her home in the south. This serves as the basic narrative structure. The images are poetic and often show compositions of rainy roads, looks through rained on windows and anonymous, young traveling women, who could all potentially become victims of these crimes. Many paramilitary police posts are crossed on the way. Once the bus is even searched by policemen. The base structure is only sometimes broken to show one of the women, Adele, and her work in a circus, which serves as sometimes comedic relaxation. Miriam herself is never shown.

I was strongly affected by the women's stories and the images were suggestive and beautifully shot. I especially liked the views of different towns, where Miriam stayed and of the other travelers and people along the stations. The film crew's re-enactment of the bus ride served as a great way to show the reality lived in Mexico and put viewers in Miriam's position, while listening to the individual stories of life in prison, torture and collaboration between police and narcos on the audio layer. But I would have liked more of this. The suggestive, poetic shots, which sometimes went into abstract compositions, prevailed a bit too much for my taste. Also, I found the film a little too long for the information told. Sadly, I think the movie's style will make it to be seen only by small, selected audiences. It is sad to know that a movie with such a politically charged content will probably not have a big impact. The situations depicted are becoming more and more everyday life in Mexico.

In summary, Tempestad is a beautiful, poetic documentary with some lengths. Viewers have to be open to get into it's flow.


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