Patagonia: a vast, ochre-coloured desert at the foot of the Andes. Ruthless winds ravage the gorges. Sun-drenched lagoons are the destination for countless flamingos which migrate here every summer. This year not only flamingos arrive. Mario, a young engineer from Buenos Aires, comes to San Lorenzo. It's his first visit to this small hapless nest of faded houses and rocky paths which seem to lead to nowhere.

Mario is a land surveyor here to mark out a route for the overland transport of a pleasure steamer. It is to pass through San Lorenzo en route to a distant inland body of water.

This is the event of the year for the local citizens. The project promises to boost their economy and free them from the monotony of their daily lives. They give Mario a warm reception and their hopes and desires come to life again. Although flattered by so much attention, Mario is quick to sense the change of sympathies when he helps a native American woman search for her missing father. He notices a wall of silence grow around him. His investigation into the missing man is blocked by influential townspeople and he begins to rather suspect the worst: that the old man's disappearance is no coincidence, but rather an act of pre-meditated murder. This man owned acres of land the value of which would be increased by the overland transport.

What role does Gloria, the attractive local shopowner, play in all this? Her husband seems to have a hand in the conspiracy. The first time they meet, Mario is drawn to her and she, too, cannot conceal her feelings for him.

When it is time for Mario to leave the village, things in San Lorenzo only appear to be unchanged.

Director's Biography

Ciro Cappellari was born in Buenos Aires in 1959, where he also studied photography and produced his first short films. Preceding that, he spent his childhood and youth in Patagonia where he later worked as a photographer.

After two years of work as a photographer in Europe he moved to Berlin in 1985 in order to study at the Film and Television Academy (dffb).

Since 1990 he has worked as scriptwriter, director and director of photography in Germany, Switzerland, USA and Argentina. Among his work as cinematograoher are films by Marcel Gisler, Didi and pepe Danquart, among which the short film SCHWARZFAHRER which received an Oscar in 1994. His own films AMOR AMERICA (1989) and HIJO DEL RIO (1991) take place in his homeland Argentina.

Ciro Cappellari received the "Cinema 100/Sundance International Award for Europe" for his cscript for SIN QUERER.

Cast & Crew

Directed by: Ciro Cappellari

Written by: Graciela Maglie, Ciro Cappellari, Osvaldo Bayer

Produced by: Albert Kitzler

Cinematography: Jürgen Jürges

Editing: Tania Stöcklin

Production Design: Pepe Uria

Costume Design: Mercedes Uria

Original Score: Gustavo Beytelman

Sound Design: Daniel Goldstein

Cast: Luisa Calcumil (Rosa), Ángela Molina (Gloria), Norman Brisky (Maldonado), Daniel Kuzniecka (Mario)

Nominations and Awards

  • Feature Film Selection 1997