Birds of Passage (Pájaros de verano) | Denver Film Society | Cristina Gallego | Ciro Guerra | Colombia

Birds of Passage

Pájaros de verano

Cristina Gallego, Ciro Guerra

Crime, Drama, Latino

Spanish, EnglishEnglish SubtitlesColombia2018125 min


No upcoming showtimes scheduled.


Narcotrafficking isn’t a new film subject, but the role of the indigenous Wayuu tribe in the birth of the Colombian drug trade certainly is. In Cristina Gallego and Ciro Guerra’s first shared directing credit (they’ve previously collaborated on four films, including the Oscar-nominated Embrace of the Serpent, DFF38), vast, color-saturated landscapes of La Guajira Desert fill the screen while an ambitious family, led by a steely matriarch, builds a business that brings them great wealth—and greater problems.

It starts with young Raphayet, who begins selling marijuana to a few clueless Peace Corps volunteers to obtain the money for his girlfriend Zaida’s dowry. The gig pays so well that Raphayet—with the assistance of his ruthless mother-in-law, Ursula—becomes a kingpin over the course of the next two decades. But as the family’s fortunes rise and its members’ greed increases, they are all at risk of leaving their culture—driven by honor and rituals—behind in this simultaneous crime saga, film noir, Western, and Greek-style tragedy, which has already earned comparisons to The Godfather.

SUBTITLED (Foreign language with on-screen subtitles)

Sponsored By:

DenverFilmFestival DenverFilmFestival
Producer: Cristina Gallego, Katrin Pors | Editor: Miguel Schverdfinger | Cinematographer: David Gallego | Screenwriter: Maria Camila Arias, Jacques Toulemonde Vidal
Cast: Carmina Martinez, José Acosta, Natalia Reyes, Jhon Narvaez, Greider Meza
Additional Countries: Denmark, Mexico