Sequoia 2 Fri, Oct 16, 2015 2:15 PM
Film Info
Section:World Cinema
Mind the Gap
Active Cinema
Running Time:91 min
Director:Jayro Bustamante
Producer:Maria Peralta
Pilar Peredo
Edgar Temembaum
Screenwriter:Jayro Bustamante
Cinematographer:Luis Armando Arteaga
Editor:Cesar Diaz
Cast:Maria Mercedes Coroy
Maria Telon
Manuel Antun
Justo Lorenzo
Marvin Coroy
Leo Antun
Print Source:Kino Lorber
Note Writer:Rod Armstrong


With an indigenous cast and the power of a classic fable, Ixcanul tells the moving story of a Mayan family living in the shadow of a volcano in the Guatemalan highlands. In a rustic cabin, Maria and her parents eke out a living by harvesting coffee with hopes of improving their situation after the local overseer, Ignacio, proposes marriage. Pretty but naïve, young Maria has her eyes instead on a handsome itinerant worker who wants to travel to the States, and a rash decision imperils everyone’s plans. In his beautifully shot debut film, writer-director Jayro Bustamante shows a world where nature is preeminent and rituals a part of daily life. An infestation of snakes that menaces their livelihood provides a rich metaphor for the various threats that face the family in a moving drama that was inspired by Bustamante’s interviews with Mayan people about their daily lives.

Co-presented by Latino Council and Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and Canal Alliance

Additional Information

Jayro Bustamante was born in Guatemala in 1977. He studied communications and then directed commercials for the agency Ogilvy & Mather. He went on to study film in Paris and screenwriting in Rome. His short films, including Cuando Sea Grande (2012), have been recognized at festivals with a number of awards.