With a remarkable group of child actors, first-time writer/director Carlos César Arbeláez narrates a beautiful tale of lost innocence set in the guerilla-military conflict of Colombia. Nine-year-old Manuel (Hernán Maricio Ocampo) lives in a remote farming village and dreams of becoming a great soccer player. When he receives the treasured gift of a new soccer ball, his dreams seem closer than ever—until he and his friends accidentally kick the ball into a mine field. Arbeláez expertly weaves the humor and danger of the boys’ attempts to retrieve the ball with the slowly encroaching and inevitable arrival of the military conflict to their village, as well as their parents’ attempts to postpone the fatal decision to join one side or the other. Beautifully filmed by director of photography Oscar Jimenez in the breathtakingly verdant Andean region of Colombia, Arbeláez’s internationally lauded film delivers a unique and powerful vision of war as seen through the eyes of children.

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Carlos César Arbeláez
Spanish with English subtitles
Running Time
93 minutes