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Poster for Utama
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Opens on December 2

Director: Alejandro Loayza Grisi Run Time: 88 min. Release Year: 2022 Language: Spanish

Starring: José Calcina, Luisa Quispe, Santos Choque

In the arid Bolivian highlands, an elderly Quechua couple has been living a tranquil life for years. While he takes their small herd of llamas out to graze, she keeps house and walks for miles with the other local women to fetch precious water. When an uncommonly long drought threatens everything they know, Virginio and Sisa must decide whether to stay and maintain their traditional way of life or admit defeat and move in with family members in the city. Their dilemma is precipitated by the arrival of their grandson Clever, who comes to visit with news. The three of them must face, each in their own way, the effects of a changing environment, the importance of tradition, and the meaning of life itself. This visually jaw-dropping debut feature by photographer-turned-filmmaker Alejandro Loayza Grisi is lensed by award-winning cinematographer Barbara Alvarez (Lucrecia Martel’s The Headless Woman) and won the Grand Jury Prize (World Cinema Dramatic) at the Sundance Film Festival.

Alejandro Loayza Grisi (1985) is a Bolivian filmmaker. Begins his artistic career in still photography and then enters the world of cinema through cinematography. As a director of photography he worked in documentary series Planeta Bolivia, and many short films such as Aicha, Dochera and Polvo. Attracted by the stories that can be told through the image in motion, he ventures into script and direction with his first feature film, Utama.

World Cinema, Drama

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