The Golden Dream

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The Golden Dream

Diego Quemada-Diez (2013)

12A Certificate


Our Score
Echoes of Cary Fukunaga's Sin Nombre (2009) reverberate around Spaniard Diego Quemada-Diez's equally shocking and compassionate drama about kids from Central America and the risks they are prepared to take to reach the United States. Shooting on Super-16 and employing non-professional leads, Quemada-Diez evokes the spirit of neo-realism as he follows teenager Brandon López and friends Carlos Chajon and Karen Martínez northwards from Guatemala City. However, the film isn't exclusively a treatise on migration, with López becoming increasingly jealous as Martínez befriends Tzotzil native Rodolfo Domínguez. However, any prejudice dissipates as the youngsters endure separation, exploitation and betrayal on crossing into Mexico. The performances are spirited and touching and cinematographer María Secco expertly frames the vulnerable youngsters against various hostile environments. But Quemada-Diez has a tendency to steer the principals from one set piece to the next rather than develop their characters or explore in depth the psychological toll being taken by their arduous odyssey.


Three Guatemalan teenagers living in a slum hope to escape their lives of poverty by making a dangerous journey to illegally enter the United States. Along the way, they befriend a Native American despite having no language in common, but find their dreams threatened by a people trafficking gang. Drama, starring Brandon Lopez and Rodolfo Dominguez. In Spanish, English and Tzotzil.

Cast & Crew

Juan Brandon López
Chauk Rodolfo Domínguez
Sara Karen Martínez
Samuel Carlos Chajon
Director Diego Quemada-Diez

Other Information

Language: English, Spanish +subtitlesColourTheatrical distributor: Peccadillo PicturesGuidance: Violence, some swearing, brief nudity.Available on: DVDReleased on: 27 Jun 2014