Giants Don't Exist

(Los gigantes no existen)
Chema Rodríguez | Drama, Fiction

2017 | 82 minutes | Guatemala

Based on the true story of Guatemalan activist Jesús Tecú, Chema Rodríguez’s second feature is a harrowing and powerful drama about survival and hope. Teco was one of the few survivors of the 1982 Río Negro massacre against indigenous populations, in which 177 women and children died.


Guatemala in the 1980s, at the height of the ruthless civil war against the country’s indigenous communities. Andrés is 9 years old. He lives with Pedro González, one of the men who massacred all the women and children in his village. Andrés has survived, but he’s scared. Pedro’s wife, María, is also scared, scared to go out, scared to lose Andrés, whom she considers as "her new son". Even Pedro is scared, scared of himself and what the Army bounds him to do. Andrés would like to run away but he also wants to stay with this new family... The unexpected arrival of his biological sister will change everything.

Based on the true story of Guatemalan activist Jesús Tecú, Chema Rodríguez’s second feature is a harrowing and powerful drama about survival and hope. Teco was one of the few survivors of the Río Negro massacre in 1982, in which 177 women and children died.


"Highly Recommended. Giants Don't Exist is based on the true story of Guatemalan activist Jesus Tecu who was one of the few survivors of the Rio Negro Massacre in 1982 in which 177 women and children died by Guatemalan soldiers." — LaRoi Lawton, Library & Learning Resources Department, Bronx Community College of the City University of New York, EMRO

"Expressive, silent and implacable work on fear." — Toni Vall, Cinemanía

Main credits

Rodríguez, Chema (film director)
Rojas, Rafael (actor)
Orantes, Patricia (actor)
Martínez, Jose Javier (actor)
Vargas Quevedo, Francisco (screenwriter)
Siminiani, León (screenwriter)

Other credits

Cinematography, Álvaro Rodríguez Sánchez; editor, José M.G. Moyano; music, Pablo Borgués.

military, violence, disappeared, true story, coming of age, childhood, Guatemala, civil war, Mayan, adoption, Rio Negro, Ydigoras Fuentes, MR-13, Efraín Ríos Montt, PID, Carlos Manuel Arana Osorio, maya, genocide, spanish, spanish language, latin america, latin american cinema, latin american film, ibero america, latin, latinx, latino, latina,,authority, authoritarianism, dictatorship, military regime, military government, fascism, repression, oppression, political oppression, political repression, far right, far right wing, modern fascism,latin american studies, caribbean american studies, island studies, latin american culture, latin american history, latin american politics, caribbean american culture, caribbean american history, caribbean american politics, latin american languages, latin american and caribbean studies, hispanic american studies, hispanic people, hispanic culture, hispanic politics,human rights, public rights, equal rights, freedom of expression, basic human rights, united nations, activism, human rights activism, human rights council, human rights commission, universal human rights, universal rights,child, children, childhood, kid, girl, girlhood, boy, boyhood, teen, teenager, puberty, adolescence, adolescent, coming-of-age, minor, kiddo, kids, juvenile, stripling, moppet, tyke, tween, tot, toddler, sonny, girlie, underaged, dependent, youngster, infancy, babyhood, girlhood, boyhood, friendships, juvenescence, juvenility, springtime, early life,history, context, narrative, past, chronicle, lore, annals, historic, personal history, archive, record, saga, biography, memoir, study,central america, honduras, costa rica, guatemala, belize, el salvador, nicaragua, panama, america central, mesoamerican biodiversity hotspot, central america volcanic arc, centroamérica, panama canal,indigenous peoples, indigenous people, indigenous, native, native people, native peoples, aboriginal people, aboriginal, aborigine, indigene, indigeneity, tribes, tribal, tribal people, tribal peoples,criminal justice, crime, judiciary, police reform, corrections, criminal law, judicial system, justice department, prosecution, judgement, criminal law, courts and corrections, corrections institutes,family, kin, fellowship, household, immediate family, extended family, multigenerational family, multigenerational household, kinfolk, family tree, genealogy, nuclear family, modern family, family tree; "Giants Don't Exist"; Pragda Films
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Roma Film Festival - Alice Nella Città Official Competition
Seville European Film Festival - Special Screening
Icaro Festival Guatemala - Opening Night Film
Guadalajara International Film Festival
Chicago Latino Film Festival

DIRECTOR: Chema Rodríguez


YEAR: 2017

GENRE: Drama, Fiction

LANGUAGE: Spanish; Indigenous languages

COLOR / B&W: Color

GRADE LEVEL: High School, College, Adults



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