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Nelson Carlo de Los Santos Arias
Dominican Republic, Argentina, Germany 2017 / 106’
Awarded film screening Fugue

A devoutly religious man, Alberto (Vicente Santos) works as a gardener at a palatial estate in the capital of the Dominican Republic. When he learns that his father has died under unexplained circumstances, he takes time off to travel to his hometown on the coast, where it turns out that his father was murdered. The village is being torn apart by organized crime, and Aberto's relatives, who took over the family following the death of the patriarch, have plans for him. They insist not only that he take part in pagan funeral rites but also that he avenge his father's death, although both these things contradict his Evangelical beliefs. Cocote (a word meaning the neck of an animal that is to be decapitated) is not only a tale of vengeance, but above all an eccentric portrait of the Dominican cultural landscape, created using various techniques and formats. The film premiered at last year's festival in Locarno, where it won the experimental section, Signs of Life.

Adam Kruk


IFF Locarno 2017 – Best Film Signs of Life Section, IFF Mar del Plata 2017 – Best Latin-american Film, FEISAL Award; Lisbon & Estoril Film Festival 2017 - Special Jury Award

Nelson Carlo de Los Santos Arias

Born in Santo Domingo in 1985, Nelson Carlo de Los Santos Arias is a director and visual artist. He studied in Buenos Aires and Edinburgh, where he began making short experimental films. He then moved to California, where he graduated from the California Institute of the Arts and shot Santa Teresa y otras historias (2015), a film essay in honor of Roberto Bolaño that was screened at the festivals in Marseille and Toronto. His latest film, Cocote, became thefirst Dominican production to be accepted for the festival in Locarno, where it won the experimental section, Signs of Life.


2011 Le Dernier des bonbons (short)

2013 Pareces una Carreta de esas que no la Paran ni los Bueyes / You Look Like a Carriage That Not Even the Oxen Can Stop

2014 Lullabies (short)

2015 Santa Teresa y otras historias / Santa Teresa and Other Stories

2017 Cocote

Cast & Crew

director Nelson Carlo de Los Santos Arias
screenplay Nelson Carlo de Los Santos Arias
cinematography Roman Kasseroller
editing Nelson Carlo de Los Santos Arias
cast Vicente Santos, Judith Rodriguez Perez, Ricardo Ariel Toribio, Yuberbi de la Rosa, Enerolisa Núñez, Pepe Sierra
producer Lukas Valenta Rinner, Christoph Friedel, Fernando Santos Diaz
production Guasábara Cine, Nabis Filmgroup, Pandora Filmproduktion
sales Luxbox
language Spanish
colouration colour & b&w