MONOS, THE SHARKS, THE INFILTRATORS, and Other Latino-Themed Films Awarded at Sundance


The Sundance Film Festival announced the winners of its 2019 edition at a ceremony in Park City, Utah this evening, which included plenty of Latino and Latino-themed winners in the different categories of the festival.

In the NEXT competition, the documentary hybrid The Infiltrators by Alex Rivera and Cristina Ibarra was the winner of the Innovator Award, and the Audience Award. The docu-thriller follows two young immigrant-activists get themselves apprehended and detained by Border Patrol—on purpose—in order to uncover and expose cases of abuse in detention centers and to help free others.

In the World Cinema Dramatic Competition, Uruguayan director Lucía Garibaldi was the winner of the Directing Award for her debut feature The Sharks / Los tiburones, a provocative and rebellious coming-age story, while the Special Jury Award was presented to the Colombian film Monos by director Alejandro Landes, a survivalist saga that follows eight adolescent members of a paramilitary squad and their hostage hide in the Colombian mountains.

In the U.S. Documentary Competition, director Luke Lorentzen received the Special Jury Award for Cinematography for his film Midnight Family, a U.S.-Mexico production shot in Mexico City that follows the Ochoa, a family that runs a private ambulance, competing with other for-profit EMTs for patients in need of urgent help.

Two Latino-themed were the winners of the Audience Awards in the U.S, Documentary and World Cinema Documentary competitions: Rachel Lears’ Knock Down the House, following four working class women who run for Congress, overcoming adversity to battle powerful political machines in very different American landscapes, and including rising political superstar Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez; and Richard Ladkani’s eco-thriller Sea of Shadows, about the saving of the planet's most endangered sea mammal, Mexico’s vaquitas marinas.

The 2019 edition of Sundance took place January 24 - February 3 in Park City, Utah.