Every night after work, Roberto makes graffiti on different walls of his neighbourhood at the east of Cali. During the day he is a construction worker and also the son of Maria, a sweet mulatto woman who migrated to the city from the Pacific jungle. Roberto has not come back home to sleep and he is starting to daydream. Maria suffers because of this; she thinks someone has bewitched him and he will end up mad. One day Roberto loses his job because he steals several cans of paint, using them to do a huge mural on the lot next to his house. His neighbours are tired of his images; they think he is promoting bad manners and disorder. Without a dime to help his mother, he crosses the city looking for Eduardo, another young graffiti creator, who studies fine arts and is having a difficult time since his parents divorced and his grandmother was diagnosed with cancer. He has been without money for several days, bored and with no creativity at all. When the boys get together, they try to get some money from Eduardo’s father Gustavo, a 65-year old lawyer who is obsessed with composing and singing “boleros” nonstop. Gustavo can’t help them, he hasn’t paid alimony to either his ex-wife or his son. He is in debt, but
- Hubert Bals Fund Lions Film Award - Rotterdam IFF
Los Hongos (The Fungi) has a lot to do with my life in Cali, the medium-sized city in Colombia where I was born, went to school and fell in love with film. I moved away for a time, but following my grandmother’s illness and subsequent death, I decided to come back home, returning to the streets where I now run into people I have known as an adolescent. I intend to make a film that mixes memories with new experiences, the places I’ve known forever with those I’ve yet to see. Working between something known and something unknown, between something I can control and something totally out of my control, fills me with deep fascination - even through the enormous difficulty that it all implies. This is not a hedonistic film. It is instead a project that arose from a pain. When most people hear the title Los Hongos (The Fungi), they immediately imagine psychedelic drugs and pleasure. Well, the metaphor in the title refers to fungi exploring their literal sense: living creatures that appear in the context of dreadful putrefaction and decay. The Fungi are life that comes from death, and it is here that the spirit of this film lies: “Life”; which I intend to portray because death has touched me - not only my grandmother’s, but also the death of my home after the divorce of my parents. I have returned to a city that I find different, almost alien, which fills me with nostalgia and therefore I want to turn into a song of life.
- CONTRAVIA FILMS