A 17-year-old Mayan girl (María Mercedes Coroy) who works on a coffee plantation in Guatemala is arranged to be married. She dreams of a life outside the farm, and charts a course for modern civilization. Guatemalan native Jayro Bustamante directed this drama.
"[A] stealthily disturbing examination of the ways that indigenous people who remain in relative isolation get exploited by the handful of indigenous people who assimilate with the nearest urban center....This an impressive debut..." -- Grade: B - 08/17/2016 A.V. Club
3.5 stars out of 4 -- "IXCANUL combines its fable-like plot with striking realism. Shot luminously by Luis Armando Arteaga, each frame holds steady on its subject, inviting the audience to calmly observer the daily routines and customs of its subjects in saturated colors that seem almost to glow." - 08/19/2016 RogerEbert.com
"Made with actual Maya farmers in the Guatemalan highlands, this luminous first feature from Jayro Bustamante has scenes of such tactile intimacy that the trust between the director and his mostly nonprofessional cast is unmistakable." - 08/18/2016 New York Times
"[E]ven as it moves from tender ethnographic portraiture into a realm of hushed, intimate tragedy, IXCANUL quivers with a fierce if understated feminine energy." - 08/25/2016 Los Angeles Times