Film - Program 3 Filmfest 2021


Directed by Matthew Johnson


Director: Matthew Johnson
Section: Program 3
Country: United States of America
Year: 2020
Language: English, Spanish
Version: Original version with English subtitles
Cast: Venecia Troncoso, Mark Stancato, Oscar Fabela, Alison Hanson

Also in this program


This film is shown as part of program 3.

Again and again, migrants in the desert border area between Mexico and the United States find themselves in a life-threatening situation. Angie and Emil are among the volunteers who leave water and food in the desert, anticipating the need for humanitarian aid. When the two receive a distress call, they set out to find a group of migrants who are stranded in Arizona’s Cabeza Prieta Wildlife Refuge. Director Matthew Johnson drew the inspiration for his politically engaged short film from the true stories of heroic work done by such organizations as No More Deaths, Border Angels, and Aguilas del Desierto.

  • Duration: 16 Min.

Meet the director


Matthew Johnson

Before pursuing a career in film, Matthew Johnson spent 14 years as a journalist, photographer, and digital storyteller. He reported on national security issues for Congressional Quarterly and created multimedia stories for the Urban Institute, a non-partisan think tank that explores the most significant social issues of the day. In 2013, he graduated from George Washington University’s Institute for Documentary Filmmaking and subsequently entered the film directing program at the University of California, Los Angeles.


Screenplay: Matthew Johnson
Director of Photography: Ingrid Sanchez
Film Editor: Alex Scarfe, Matthew Johnson
Composer: Paul Burgess
Production Designer: Jake Cushnir
Costume Design: Alex Tan
Producer: Noémi Sornet
Production Company: University of California, Los Angeles