Innocent Voices

Watch Innocent Voices

  • R
  • 2004
  • 2 hr 3 min
  • 7.8  (8,081)
  • 66

Innocent Voices is a heart-wrenching drama film that depicts the brutal reality of a civil war-torn El Salvador in the 1980s. The movie, directed by Luis Mandoki, tells the story of an eleven-year-old boy named Chava (played by Carlos Padilla) who lives in a small rural village with his mother, sister, and little brother. Chava's father abandoned the family when he was very young, leaving him as the man of the house.

The film begins with Chava's teacher announcing that the army is recruiting boys over the age of twelve to fight in the war against the guerrilla. This news terrifies Chava's mother and traumatizes the whole community, as they know that the army soldiers will come for their sons. Chava's mother decides to send her elder daughter to her grandmother's house to keep her safe while she and Chava stay behind.

The rest of the movie follows Chava's daily life as he tries to navigate through the constant fear and chaos of the war, the brutal government army's oppression, and his coming of age struggles. The story unfolds as the army approaches the village to recruit boys, and Chava realizes that he is only a year away from being drafted. The film portrays the complexity of the war and how ordinary people like Chava's family are caught in between and suffer the most.

As the story progresses, Chava's journey explores various themes such as childhood innocence, family bonds, social injustice, and the horrors of war. The movie depicts how the war disrupts people's lives and jeopardizes their futures, with children forced to become soldiers, and families losing their homes and loved ones. Despite the tragedy, the film maintains a sense of hope through Chava's resilience and his unwavering love for his family.

One of the most significant aspects of the movie is the outstanding performances of the actors, particularly Carlos Padilla, who brilliantly portrays Chava's innocence and vulnerability as well as his determination to protect his family. Leonor Varela delivers a powerful performance as Chava's mother, conveying her pain and struggles as she tries to keep her family safe. Xuna Primus also shines as Beto, Chava's friend, whose tragic fate highlights the brutality of the war.

The film's cinematography and sound design are also noteworthy. The vivid and desolate visuals provide a stark contrast between the beauty of the rural countryside and the ugliness of the war. The sounds of gunfire, army helicopters, and bombs enhance the tension and the brutality of the war.

Innocent Voices is a must-watch film that sheds light on a little-known episode of history and raises awareness about the impact of war on children's lives. The movie is a poignant and moving depiction of a horrific period in El Salvador's history, and it's a testament to the resilience of the human spirit. It's a film that will stay with you long after the credits roll.

Innocent Voices
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    2 hr 3 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.8  (8,081)
  • Metascore