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The Night Watchman(El Velador)

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Mexico · 2011
1h 12m
Director Natalia Almada
Genre Documentary

This documentary follows Martin, who night after night watches over the extravagant mausoleums of some of Mexico’s most notorious Drug Lords. Amidst the labyrinth of the cemetery, this film about violence without violence reminds us how, in the turmoil of Mexico’s bloodiest conflict since the Revolution, ordinary life persists and quietly defies the dead.

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Time Out by David Fear

Filtering the fallout of Mexico's drug wars through the eyes of one stoic security guard, documentarian Natalia Almada (El General) avoids the head-on journalistic approach and emerges with something far more impressive: a piece of lyrical, sideways social reportage that still connects an astounding number of dots.


Slant Magazine by Nick Schager

El Velador doesn't pass judgment or manipulate emotionally, instead choosing simply to consider the arduousness of survival in a land wracked by slaughter.


The New York Times by Stephen Holden

Natalia Almada's eloquent documentary portrait of a sprawling graveyard in Culiacán, Mexico, in the northwestern state of Sinaloa. The rapidly expanding cemetery has become the burial ground of choice for the country's slain drug lords.

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