At the Vancouver Playhouse
19 year old José lives in Guatemala City with his mother, working at a food stall and running orders to waiting drivers. Isolated and often bored, he spends his free time on dating apps and cruising hook up spots in the city for random sex with other closeted men. Through one of these trysts he meets Luis, a migrant worker from the Carribbean, whose tender nature awakens his resigned heart. The two begin seeing each other as often as possible, dreaming of a life of freedom to love each other and live together without fear and secrecy. As their passion and affection deepen and Luis’ time in Guatemala City runs out, José faces a difficult choice; to stay with his mother, who depends on him for his income and with whom he has a loving (if closeted) relationship, or to follow Luis.
Filmed on location in Guatemala City with a local crew and starring Mayan actor Enrique Salanic, this feature was based on two years of interviews with young Latin American people, guided around the following questions: Which person are you closest to in your life? What’s your most unforgettable memory? Have you been in love? Crafted with a deliberate empathetic collaborative spirit, José is a testament to the resilience of young queer people in Latin America today.
José | Li Cheng | Guatemala | 2018 | 85 min | Spanish with English Subtitles.