TorinoFilmLab - Training, development, Funding



Simón Mesa Soto

Colombia, Sweden


Colombia, 1997. Guerrilla and paramilitary forces are plaguing the country. Amparo, a single mother, learns that her eldest son Elias has unexpectedly been detained by the army, and after being proven that he has not paid his obligatory military service, will be sent to a war zone far away from the city.
Elias is a difficult boy; he does not work, does not like school, and spends his time hanging out with friends. However, Amparo does not want her child to leave home. She contacts a man from the illegal market who can provide her with an exemption paper, a common transaction during those days. But the money he asks for is beyond Amparo’s means.
There is one day left before he departs, and Amparo must decide whether to let Elias go or carry out an impossible journey to keep her child.


I was raised by a single mother during the ‘90s, one of the most violent times in Colombia. The story came from the moment in my adolescence when I had to confront the obligatory military service and from the way I blamed my mother, after contacting a man to illegally obtain the military card, because we did not have enough money to prevent me from going to the army. In Colombia, most of the young men who are enlisted in the military service come from low class, and only those who have the financial means can avoid it by accessing the illegal market.
I wanted to create a portrait of a mother who decides she does not want to give her son to war, and has to overcome in a single day all obstacles to reach his liberation. By taking this decision she embarks on a journey against a society ruled by man, corruption and war; a journey motivated by the love and the animal instinct of a mother when her child is exposed to situations she will not be able to control.
I find it interesting to approach the functioning of my society from a portrait of the everyday life, in a story where “the hero” is a loving woman.


During war times in Colombia, a mother struggles to keep her son away from the military service.
Simón Mesa Soto

Scriptwriter, Film Director

production notes

original title

directed by
Simón Mesa Soto

produced byEvidencia Films
cra 5 # 26B-39, Apto 704

in co-production with
Momento Film – Sweden

total production budget
€ 800.000