A film by Tatiana Huezo
(Mexico, 2016, 105 min. In Spanish with English subtitles)
Utilizing the direct testimony of two women whose lives have been torn apart by the cartel-fueled terror racking Mexico in the 21st century, Tatiana Huezo’s Tempestad is an impressionistic portrait—at once lyrical and shattering—of the human cost of the country’s lawlessness.
The first of the film’s protagonists, Miriam, remains haunted by the experience of finding herself arrested at her workplace and accused, without proof, of “people trafficking.” The violence she suffered and was exposed to during her imprisonment has left a profound gap in her life. Her story is counterpointed with that of Adela, who today works as a clown in a travelling circus. Ten years ago, her life too was irreversibly transformed; every night during the show, she evokes her missing daughter, Monica.
Mirror-like, Tempestad reflects the impact of the violence and impunity that afflict Mexico. Through these women’s voices, we are drawn into the heart of their feelings, steeped in loss and pain, but also love, dignity, and resistance. Though the two women’s stories have no direct connection to each other, Huezo’s exquisite visual style and the profound empathy of her approach weaves them together into a whole through which they resonate with and amplify each other.
"Tempestad sees these rough, modest lives imbued with compounded grief and possibilities —metaphysical, even—of transformation. The stories of these two women are far bigger than they may think they are." —Daniel Kasman, MUBI