Archive of films Maria Full of Grace / María Llena eres de gracia

USA / Colombia
2003, 101 min

Section: Horizons
Year: 2004

Seventeen-year-old Maria Alvarez lives in a town north of Bogotá, works at a flower farm, and rues the thought of being stuck in her obscure birthplace forever. She decides to take off but ends up getting mixed up in a dangerous business smuggling dope. Berlin 2004: Alfred Bauer Award, Dilver Bear for actress Calatina Sandino Moreno ex aequo.


Seventeen-year-old Maria lives in a small town north of Bogotá with her grandmother, mother and sister. Every morning she rushes off to catch a bus that will take her to the flower farm where she works with her friend Blanca. Weekends, the only entertainment in town is music on the square, but Maria has seen those same faces so many times before. She isn´t in love with her boyfriend Juan, and this gruelling social existence is the only thing on the horizon. She attempts to make a change but, in doing so, gets herself involved in a dangerous, life-threatening game. The attractive girl finds herself in a situation which tests her inner strength and courage; thanks to this test, Maria is then able to decide where her life is leading her. The film was screened in competition at this year´s Berlin IFF; director Marston says of his film: "I think that there´s some kind of connecting link between today´s seventeen-year-olds which surpasses cultural and economic barriers, and this is one of the reasons why this film means so much to me. It describes one´s endeavours to find oneself and one´s place in the given world".

About the director

Joshua Marston (b. 1968), screenwriter and director, grew up in Southern California and graduated in sociology from the University of California, Berkeley. He afterward left for Paris where he worked for Life magazine and ABC News, then came to Prague to teach English for a year. After returning to the US he continued his studies, this time in political science at the University of Chicago, and in film at New York University. He has made the shorts Bus to Queens, Voice of an Angel and Trifecta, followed by his feature debut Maria Full of Grace. The screenplay, written by the director, was one of those chosen for the screenwriting seminar at Sundance.


HBO Films London
98 Theobald´s Road, WC1X 8WB, London
United Kingdom
Tel: +44 207 984 5048
Fax: +44 207 984 5052

About the film

Color, 35 mm

Section: Horizons
Director: Joshua Marston
Screenplay: Joshua Marston
Dir. of Photography: Jim Denault
Music: Jacobo Lieberman, Leonardo Heiblum
Editor: Anna McCabe, Lee Percy
Producer: Paul Mezey
Production: Journeyman Pictures, koprodukce / co-production: Tucan Productions
Cast: Catalina Sandino Moreno, Yenny Paola Vega, Guilied López, Jhon Alex Toro, Patricia Rae, Virgina Ariza, Charles Albert Patiño, Wilson Guerrero
Contact: HBO Films London


Lissa Lebel


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