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Acquisitions – Indie Films

License & Registration Please: Samuel Goldwyn Hunt Down SXSW Winner “Transpecos”

Variety called it a “handsomely crafted debut,” THR gives it a stamp of approval by calling it “artfully made but wholly accessible for a mainstream audience,” SXSW auds bestowed it with Best Narrative Feature award and Samuel Goldwyn Films are putting the cuffs on Greg Kwedar‘s U.S.-Mexico border indie thriller. Starring Johnny Simmons, Gabriel Luna (you might have caught him in Bernie and True Detective) and Clifton Collins Jr., Deadline reports that they’ll book more fest showings for Transpecos before releasing it in the fall.

Gist: Written by Kwedar and Clint Bentley, the film follows three border patrol agents — rookie Davis (Simmons), seasoned Flores (Luna) and callous, world-weary Hobbs (Collins) — who man a checkpoint on a remote highway. On what feels like another routine stop, the contents of one car will throw their lives out of control as dark secrets are revealed in a world where the line between right and wrong shifts like the desert itself.

Worth Noting: The film’s score is brought to us by The National‘s Aaron and Bryce Dessner.

Do We Care?: The novelty of border conflict/morally imbued dramas might have worn out, but I wouldn’t be surprised in the yearend round up if we’re adding Transpecos to docu Cartel Land and Denis Villeneuve’s Sicario in taut explorations on the matter.


Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist and critic at (founded in 2000). Eric is a regular at Sundance, Cannes and TIFF. He has a BFA in Film Studies at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013 he served as a Narrative Competition Jury Member at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson's This Teacher (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022 he served as a New Flesh Comp for Best First Feature at the 2022 Fantasia Intl. Film Festival. Current top films for 2022 include Tár (Todd Field), All That Breathes (Shaunak Sen), Aftersun (Charlotte Wells).

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