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Directed by Astrid Rondero, Fernanda Valadez
Mexico, USA, France
126 minutes
Unclassified 18+
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Winner of the Sundance Grand Jury Prize, Sujo is unlike anything you’d expect from a Mexican cartel drama, as it follows a cartel-born child from infancy to manhood in an epic life-affirming odyssey.

Sujo is orphaned when his assassin father is murdered by his own cartel. Even though he’s only four, the boy is considered a liability, and the cartel orders his death to ensure there’ll be no reprisals to worry about in the future. But young Sujo is protected by his aunt, growing up in the isolated countryside. The spectre of the cartel is never far away, however: Sujo reaches his teens and is tempted to join the local cartel, and even when he moves to the city, the world of violent criminality is never far away. Will he be drawn back to the life his father lived and died for? Directors Astrid Rondero and Fernanda Valadez create visually distinctive chapters as they tell this complex and immersive story. Comparisons to Richard Linklater’s Boyhood have been made, and the films are similar not only in that both follow the main character over many years, but also in the extreme empathy and concern each character elicits from the audience. As Rondero and Valadez put it: “In the end, the whole film is a portrait of this young man, Sujo. A portrait but also a promise of the man he deserves to be.”

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An optimistic entry in a traditionally brutal genre, Sujo is a story about defying gravity. If anything, it’s more like Richard Linklater’s Boyhood, as the filmmakers check in on Sujo (played by two actors) over the years
Peter Debruge, Variety
A work of tremendous lyrical potency, even more intricate in meaning and scope … Sujo thunderously demonstrates why Valdez and Rondero stand among those soon to be regarded as the new masters of Mexican cinema
Carlos Aguilar, IndieWire
Its atmosphere, texture and humanity confirm Rondero and Valadez as talents to watch
David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter

Special Guest

Astrid Rondero
Astrid Rondero is a Mexican filmmaker who has collaborated with Fernanda Valadez for over 15 years. Her collaborations with Valadez include Of This World (2010), In Still Waters (2011), and 400 Bags (2014), and their feature film Identifying Features received a Special Jury Award for Best Screenplay at the Sundance Film Festival in 2020.


Wed 12 Jun
State Theatre
Assisted Listening
Book Tickets Cancel
Thu 13 Jun
State Theatre
Assisted Listening
Book Tickets Cancel
Sun 16 Jun
Dendy Newtown - Cinema 3
Sold Out
Assisted Listening
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Program Strand
Official Competition
Unclassified 18+
Mexico, USA, France
In Spanish with English subtitles
Astrid Rondero, Fernanda Valadez
Astrid Rondero, Fernanda Valadez, Diana Arcega
Juan Jesús Varela, Yadira Pérez, Sandra Lorenzano
Astrid Rondero, Fernanda Valadez
Ximena Amann
Astrid Rondero, Fernanda Valadez, Susan Korda
Australian Premiere
Crime, Women Directors, Festival Award Winners, Central & South America
Company Credits
Australian Distributor: Vendetta Films
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