Alfonso Cuarón has founded a dynasty. And we’re not referring figuratively to the spiritual and aesthetic heirs who carry on his legacy in the Mexican film industry. In fact, we’re being entirely literal: just last month, his son Jonás (who also happened to co-write Gravity) premiered his second feature film as director for audiences at the Toronto Film Festival, and audiences ate it up. Now the film, entitled Desierto, has officially been picked up for distribution by upstart studio STX Entertainment, which means we can probably look forward to a stateside theatrical run in the near future.
You may already have caught wind of Jonás Cuarón’s first directorial endeavor, Año Uña, which pushed the boundaries of narrative filmmaking by using still photographs to tell a story shot entirely without a script. Desierto continues with this formally audacious approach, but this time around we can look forward to actual moving images that feature the dreamy gaze our collective boyfriend, Gael García Bernal. The action-thriller’s minimal plot follows a group of Mexican migrants as they run through the desert borderland evading shots from an anti-immigrant American vigilante — and not much else happens.
True to his family name, Cuarón takes a high-concept storyline and brings it into unconventional narrative territory, offering little in the way of explanation or exposition without sacrificing the film’s star-driven action-thriller DNA. Unfortunately, we currently only have a handful of publicity stills to get an idea of the film’s style, but The Hollywood Reporter did sit down with GGB as well as papi and hijo Cuarón to get the lowdown on where this film came from and why it’s important. Check out the video above and keep an eye out for more info on Desierto’s U.S. invasion.