The New Waves


Valentin Merz | Switzerland | 2022 | 110 min.
O.V. in German, Swiss-German, French, Spanish and English with English and Spanish subtitles

Shameless and tender, exciting and witty, dark and erratic, De noche los gatos son pardos pays homage to the tradition of underground and queer cinema, the poetics of Apichatpong Weerasethakul's fantasy and the humorous deconstructions of detective films carried out by directors such as Bruno Dumont. Valentin Merz's debut feature, Special Mention for Best First Film at the Locarno Film Festival, is driven by the right to lose oneself and to feel lost in life, in filmmaking and in sex. We start in the shooting of a debauched film in the Swiss forests and after the mysterious disappearance of the director, we end up in the Mexican jungle, where the "muxes", an expression of trans identity typical of the Zapotec culture, live.

Direction: Valentin Merz
Cinematography: Robin Mognetti
Editing: Andreea Vescan
Sound: Miguel Moraes Cabral
Cast: Cándida Sánchez, Pablo Marte
Production: Marie Lanne-Chesnot
Production Company: Andrea Film
Distributor: The Open Reel
International Sales: THE OPEN REEL

Valentin Merz was born in Zurich in 1985 moving to Mexico City in 2007, where he worked as a printer. Before studying Film at HEAD in Geneva, he worked on film and theatre too. In 2018, he founded the production company Andrea Film. Merz wrote and directed the short films Chronique d'un territoire (2016), Klara (2018),  Dreaming Like Louis (2020), and Brüder – Ein Familienfilm (2020, premiered at Visions du Réel), but he also acted in his own productions and films like Unrest by Cyril Schäublin. De noche los gatos son pardos is Merz’s feature film debut, which premiered at Locarno, where it won a Special Mention for Best First Feature.