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House Hold: Sideshow & Janus Films Move into Berlinale Fave “Tótem”

House Hold: Sideshow & Janus Films Move into Berlinale Fave “Tótem”

Winner of the Ecumenical Jury Prize and easily among the top films at this year’s Berlinale, Lila Avilés‘ sophomore feature Tótem had already racked up tons of world sales and now just before its North American premiere at the New Directors/New Films, the Sideshow and Janus Films folks swopped in for North American rights. Variety reports that the film will be released later in the year – positioning it as Mexico’s possible entry for the Oscars. We were especially big on the film with our Nicholas Bell comparing the four star film to Alice Rohrwacher’s The Wonders and Taiwan master filmmaker –

“Avilés injects an unexpected amount of observational humor while also channeling something like Edward Yang’s Yi Yi: A One and a Two (2000), where a child’s awareness in the situation of caring for a loved one is limited by their lack of worldly comprehension.”

Tótem follows seven-year-old Sol, who spends the day at her grandfather’s home, helping her aunts Nuri and Alejandra with the preparations for a surprise party they’re throwing for her father, Tonatiuh, who is terminally ill. However, as night descends, a strange and chaotic atmosphere takes over, shattering the bonds that hold the family together, and Sol will come to understand that her world will change dramatically.

The filmmaker was selected as one of the Miu Miu Women’s Tales – she’ll be at the Venice Film Festival with the short later this year.

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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