Exposes indigenous abandonment with the film Sanctorum, by Joshua Gil – El Sol de México

“We are already dead, but we must do something. Every day someone is killed. Everyone listen, we are going to defend ourselves”, says a teacher and leader of a small community in oaxacaafter the last murders perpetrated by drug traffickers and the notice of territorial occupation by the army.

Meanwhile, from the skies, terrible sounds have been heard that tear apart the stillness among the vegetation of the mountains. The first to hear them are the seniors“a noise like bells”, they do not know if it is a beneficial message or the announcement of the end of time, the only sure thing is that something superior and unknown is approaching.

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This is the plot of the movie Sanctorumwhich will have its commercial premiere this Thursday the 22nd, after having been exhibited for the first time in 2019, at the Venice International Film Festival.

“The truth is that we are very happy for this premiere, it has been a very intense fight so that the film could enter distribution”, commented Joshua Gil, director and writer of the movie.

The movie is a risky bet that combines with solid results the characteristics of the Documentary film and fantasy, by proposing an apocalyptic story, full of suspense —which could well be compared to some creation of the cosmic horror imagined by HP Lovecraft— but which results in a criticism of the abandonment and persecution of some indigenous peoples in Mexico, from the worldview of the Mixe communities.

“It is very sad that the issue of movie, four years after filming, is still in force. And even more now that it is very worrying that the army is in charge of taking care of national security, after all the known abuses that it has committed,” said Carlos Sosa, producer of the movie.

Completely spoken in the Ayöök (Mixe) language, it was largely recorded in the territories of the indigenous communities of Santa María Tlahuitoltepec, who although in reality they do not present these problems of persecution by the army and harassment by criminal groups, have a deep worldview linked to the care of nature, which Joshua Gil recovers.

“In this movie Joshua is talking about life in Tlahuitoltepec. We have a supreme being that we have great respect for, called Condoy. Although the movie it does not refer directly to our worldview, it does make symbolic references to it,” explains Nereyda Pérez, one of the protagonists of the film and a member of the Mixe community.

For his part, Damián D. Martínez, another of the protagonists, highlighted the value of movie for the community, which is one of the few productions, if not the first, which is made from the fantastic genre in the area, where countless documentaries. And he stressed the importance of talking about these issues of abuse by authorities against indigenous groups.

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“I hope that this film continues to be promoted, because of everything that is happening in the Senate and everything that is being talked about the militarization of the country. I believe that the film can serve as a bridge for information, because the State really knows what is happening in the indigenous peoples, how we face the drug trafficking and militarizationbut they don’t want to attend to it,” he concluded.

Sanctorum can be seen in the halls Cinepolis and Cinemexas well as in the National Cinematheque and more than twenty alternative rooms throughout the republic.

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