During his day job as a Spanish criminal interpreter in a small town in California, filmmaker Rodrigo Reyes met a young man named Sansón, an undocumented Mexican immigrant who was sentenced to life in prison without parole. With no permission to interview him, Sansón and Reyes worked together over a decade, using hundreds of letters as inspiration for recreations of Sansón’s childhood—featuring members of Sansón’s own family. The result is a vibrant portrait of a friendship navigating immigration and the depths of the criminal justice system, and pushing the boundaries of cinematic imagination to rescue a young migrant’s story from oblivion.
Winner: Best film at the Sheffield DocFest international competition
Born in Damascus – Short Film:
After ten years apart, a Scottish filmmaker tries to reconnect with her closest cousin. Once so similar, their paths were separated by war. As they piece together memories of Syria, they begin to wonder – "What happened to our family?"
Screening is followed by a 15 minute Q&A with Laura Wadha, Director of Born in Damascus.