Batalla en el Cielo


Marcos, a general’s driver, is haunted by the tragic outcome of a child kidnapping he perpetrated with his wife. In his troubled search for relief, he confesses to Ana, his boss’ daughter …

Director's Statement

Marcos Hernandez worked with my father at the Ministry of Culture. I asked him to play a small part in JAPÓN and during the shooting I thought of him for my next film. He inspired me a great deal for the story of BATLLE IN HEAVEN – just as Alejandro Ferretis did for JAPÓN.

Marcos was perfect for the part of a man tormented by inner turmoil because I needed someone who was introspective with a strong presence and a real mystery about him. I like to take people as they are, as if they were a light on water, a tree or a beautiful painting. Then the camera captures the inner person. Marcos doesn’t try to be anything, he just is. My ideal actor! He doesn’t represent anything and he’s not meant to. I believe we get closer to a man when he simply stands in front of the camera without trying to communicate any meaning. The actors in BATTLE IN HEAVEN didn’t get to read the script beforehand and didn’t know their characters’ thoughts. I was looking for the most natural acting possible, or rather lack of acting, to be precise. For Ana, played by Ana Mushkadiz, I actually changed the part to fit her personality and her way of being. When I’m attracted to something in a person, I construct the character around the thing that sparked off that attraction. What’s primary is the human being. I also love being surprised by the spontaneity and generosity of amateur actors.

Director's Biography

Carlos Reygadas was born in Mexico in 1971. After studying and then practising law, he moved to Brussels in 1997 to devote himself to his other passion, cinema. Over the course of two years, he put together a technical team of mostly new-comers and shot his first feature, JAPON. The film was self-produced and presented at the Rotterdam and Cannes Film Festivals in 2002 where it received a Special Mention for the Cámera d’Or. BATTLE IN HEAVEN is his second feature.

2002 JAPÓN

Cast & Crew

Directed by: Carlos Reygadas

Written by: Carlos Reygadas

Produced by: Philippe Bober, Carlos Reygadas, Jaime Romandía, Susanne Marian

Cinematography: Diego Martinez Vignatti

Editing: Benjamin Mirguet, Adoracíon G. Elipe, Nicolas Schmerkin

Cast: Marcos Hernández (Marcos), Anapola Mushkadiz (Ana)

Nominations and Awards

  • Screen International Award (for a non-European film) 2005