Sin Nombre

SIN NOMBRE EXPOSES THE PERILS OF MIGRATION TO THE UNITED STATES
Sayra (played by Paulina Gaitan) is on a long train trip from Honduras to relatives in New Jersey through Guatemala and México in Sin Nombre (nameless), directed by Cary Fukunaga. Although she must elude the border patrol, the main peril is gang warfare inside México, beginning at the Chiapas border. At gunpoint, the Salvratrucha gang (an actual gang that also operates in Los Angeles) tries to extract money from migrating Guatemalans as well as Mexicans, including Willy (played by Edgar Flores), who eventually is trying to escape a death sentence from his own gang and a rival gang. For Willy, the gang’s disrespect for his girlfriend is a motive to kill its leader, Mago (played by Tenoch Huerta Mejia), who is molesting Sayra. The two then bond but only one survives. Because the film shows exactly how the trek occurs for millions of migrants, how the criminal gangs operate, and why most migrants do not complete the trip, the Political Film Society has nominated Sin Nombre as best film exposé of 2009. MH