Ixnay on any aughlays in this dilatory drama about a 17-year-old Guatemalan girl who, though spoken for through an arranged marriage, finds herself pregnant with another man’s child. First time writer-director Jayro Bustamante’s opening salvo lobs metaphoric bricks out of a tennis cannon: an unbroken long take of our virginal heroine María (María Mercedes Coroy, leading a cast of non-professionals) preparing for her wedding day is followed by scenes of two pigs being force-fed rum to put them in the mood to procreate. Halfway through the picture, it becomes apparent that the film’s power hinges on the relationship between María and her mother Juana (María Telón), a woman possessed who will do everything in her power to prepare her child for the hell that awaits. Think Stella Dallas, only slower. Much slower. The end ultimately justifies the means; whether viewers will want to stick it out is another thing. (2015) — Scott Marks
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