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Fri-Tue, Mar 8-12


  • Dir. Lila Avilés
  • Mexico
  • 2024
  • 95 min.
  • NR
  • DCP

In Spanish with English subtitles

  • Assistive Listening
  • Subtitled
  • Hearing Loop

Part of Passports: An International Film Series

In a bustling Mexican household, seven-year-old Sol is swept up in a whirlwind of preparations for the birthday party for her father, Tona, led by her mother, aunts and other relatives. As the day goes on, building to an event both anticipated and dreaded, Sol begins to understand the gravity of the celebration this year and watches as her family does the same. This poignant and emotionally expansive film from Lila Avilés (THE CHAMBERMAID) cements her skill at directing dynamic, ensemble performances in her stunning sophomore effort.

“There are worlds inside worlds in TÓTEM, a soulful drama populated by an array of creatures, some with two legs and sad smiles, others with feathers, fur and shells… It focuses on a serious-eyed girl, Sol, who serves as the story’s luminous celestial body. You see much of what she sees, the warmth and disorder. Yet because Sol is just 7, you also see what it means to be a child in that messy reality known as adulthood.” —Mahnola Dargis, NYT Critic’s Pick, New York Times

“The best compliment that can be paid to TÓTEM is that it’s a film that you genuinely don’t want to end.” —Alison, Willmore, Vulture

“A gentle caress of a film… It is restrained, poignant, and the type of slice-of-life film that is absolutely precious to the portrayal of the human condition.” —Peyton Robinson,

“TÓTEM has now cemented Avilés as a new pioneer for Mexican cinema whose potential could one day rival or even surpass the Cuarón’s and Del Toro’s of this world.” —David Opie, IndieWire 

“A luminous and soul-nourishing microcosm built on profound love in the face of impending grief, the film reveals itself in the charged interactions between its multiple characters…  TÓTEM makes visible the moment a young person becomes self-aware about the aspects of our time here that we can’t change nor explain, particularly mortality.” —Carlos Aguilar, The Playlist

See the Official Website