INNOCENT VOICESIt is the1980s and a violent civil war is raging in the Central American country of El Salvador. Armed to the teeth, the corrupt government troops and guerrilla units stand in irreconcilable opposition. FMLN Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front is the resistance movement which farm workers have organised. Their struggle for liberty has been going on for twelve years. So far 75,000 Salvadorans have died; 8,000 disappeared and almost a million emigrated. Among those affected is twelve-year-old Oscar Torres. What he went through at the time formed the basis of his screenplay for this feature film.
In it he describes the fate of eleven-year-old Chava, who lives in Cuscatazingo, a town which is the object of fierce fighting. After his father takes off one day and his Uncle joins the guerrillas, the boy suddenly finds himself the head of the family. And since the government has no qualms about enlisting twelve-year-olds as soldiers, the end of his childhood seems imminent. Already his life is marked by the daily struggle for survival and his village is something between a playground and a battlefield. While he tenderly falls in love with his classmate Cristina Maria, the war moves ever nearer. As does the day when hell have to enter the army