SEPA, NUESTRO SEÑOR DE LOS MILAGROS
Film poster for "Sepa, Nuestro Señor De Los Milagros" with men behind wooden bars and two people walking with animal on grassland.
SEPA, NUESTRO SEÑOR DE LOS MILAGROS
Film poster for "Sepa, Nuestro Señor De Los Milagros" with men behind wooden bars and two people walking with animal on grassland.
The story of a prison without bars forgotten in the Peruvian Amazon

SEPA, NUESTRO SEÑOR DE LOS MILAGROS

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OFFICIAL SELECTION - To Save and Project: The MoMA International Festival of Film Preservation | "A provocative addition to the literature of incarceration." - The New York Times

Experimental Penal Colony in Peru • Prisons • Criminal Justice • Colonization of the Amazon • Rediscovered Archival Film

Date of Completion: 1987 | Run Time: 72 minutes​​ | Language: Spanish, English & German with Spanish, English, German & Italian subtitles | Captions: No | Director: Walter Saxer | Producer: Walter Saxer | DOP: Rainer Klausmann | Editing: Micki Joanni | Music: Jindrich Konir | Sound Mix: Haymo Henry Hayder | Commentary: Mario Vargas Llosa | Camera Assistant: Jorge Vignati Ojeda | Production Manager: Gustavo Cerff Arbulú | Co-Production: Alive Film & TV Production, Zurich

SEPA, NUESTRO SEÑOR DE LOS MILAGROS is the name of an open air penal colony created in 1951 by the Peruvian Government within the national effort to colonize the Amazon territories by promoting agricultural practices amongst inmates in a 37.000 hectares piece of land in the jungles of Central Peru. The 1987 documentary directed by Walter Saxer is the only window into this experimental penal colony in Peru, where no camera has ever entered and little has been written about.

The New York Times | Glenn Kenny
"A provocative addition to the literature of incarceration."

The Last Thing I See
"An engrossing cinematic essay on captivity and detention, Sepa offers a different perspective, a different piece of a larger conversation, and feels pressing and urgent, as much today as in 1986."

The Film Stage | Jaime Grijalba

Boomstick Comics | Bryan Kluger
"Sepa shows that the traditional prison system isn’t working, with its mere existence being a protest. Recommended!"

Backseat Mafia | Rob Aldam
"Lost for decades, the newly restored SEPA: Nuestro Señor de los Milagros is a fascinating insight into a different way of treating felons....a film which is both deeply empathetic and thoroughly engrossing."

Letterboxed

VIMooZ
"After languishing in a closet for more than three decades, this newly-rediscovered film is a unique documentary record of a bold and troubling experiment in criminal justice."

FESTIVALS
Il Cinema Ritrovato, Bologna, Italy (World Premiere)
Festival PlayDoc Tui, Galicia, Spain (Spain Premiere)
Festival Corrientes, Arequipa Peru
To Save and Project: The MoMA International Festival of Film Preservation (North American Premiere)
Festival de Lima, Lima, Peru (Peruvian Premiere)
Frontera Sur Festival, Chile 

SCREENINGS
Bam
Metrograph (North American Theatrical Release)
American Cinematheque (Theatrical)
CCAAA 2022 World Day for Audiovisual Heritage, Sala Azul, Lima