Berlinale: Programme

Film File

Generation Kplus (Out of competition)

Los ausentes

The Absents

Die Abwesenden

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With a guitar on his back and a repertoire of exactly three tunes, Rafaelito and his two friends make their way to an indigenous community in Mexico’s Huasteca region, where they are supposed to perform at a funeral. The magical power of the music takes hold quickly and is echoed in the faces of the guests and young musicians. The soulful songs offer solace and make it easier to say goodbye. Then the widow requests a fourth song.

José Lomas Hervert

Mexico 2017


17’ · Colour

recommendation: 12 years and up


Luis Mario Salazar Zavala (Rafaelito)
Jaime Alfonso Meráz Sánchez (Abdón)
Víctor Hugo Garrocho Hernández (Ponciano)
Rafaela Arcángel (Anciana)
Aldo Verástegui (Lanchero)


Written and Directed by
José Lomas Hervert
Diana Garay Viñas
Jesús García
Eloy Fernando Zúñiga Guinea
Sound Mixing
Omar Juárez Espino
Carlos Cervantes
Art Director
Daniela Cruz Rodríguez
Production Design
Daniela Cruz Rodríguez
Mariana Moreno Castillo
Mariana Moreno Castillo
Assistant Director
Karen Barrera Berroso
Production Manager
Laura Berrón
Hugo Espinosa


José Lomas Hervert

The Mexican director was born in San Luis Potosí and raised in Arizona and Texas from the age of nine. He studied fine arts at the University of Texas and, in 2011, founded the Bisonte Rojo production company. In 2012, he wrote and produced Potosí, which won the Best First Mexican Feature Award at the Guanajuato International Film Festival and was nominated for three categories in the Ariel Awards in Mexico. Los ausentes (The Absents) won Best Mexican Short at the Monterrey International Film Festival in 2018.


2015 Gerardo; documentary 2017 Los ausentes (The Absents); short film

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2019

Produced by

Hugo Espinosa

Instituto Mexicano de Cinematografia