Struggling with a toxic relationship, a woman falls into a downward spiral of ideas while she tries to put an end to it. Perhaps matches and gasoline are a true last resort.

  • José Luis Arriaga
  • José Luis Arriaga
  • David Prochazka
  • José Luis Arriaga
  • Edson Resendiz
  • Vladimira Krckova
    Key Cast
  • Eva Korintova
    Key Cast
  • Petr Mikeska
    Key Cast
  • Project Title (Original Language):
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    psychological, drama
  • Runtime:
    12 minutes 24 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    March 8, 2019
  • Production Budget:
    3,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
    Czech Republic
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Buenos Aires International Film Festival
    October 5, 2019
    Official Selection
  • Kuala Lumpur International Film Festival in the Sky
    Petaling Jaya
    August 14, 2020
    Jury Prize 2020 KLIFFS Nominee
Director Biography - José Luis Arriaga

José Luis Arriaga (b. Sept. 14, 1978) is an Artist, Filmmaker and Cinematographer. Arriaga graduated from the International Program at the Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague (FAMU) with a diploma in cinematography. As a visual artist his output ranges across illustration, inks, painting, and he also does writing collaborations, photography and video.

Born in a miner town La Perla in Chihuahua, México, Arriaga spent his childhood in Monclova, an industrial city, chasing dreams of becoming a filmmaker since early age. His drawings, praised by other kids, showed a strong influence drafted from cinema themes, movies and, of course, pop culture. Sci-fi characters like the Terminator and the USS Discovery One spaceship from 2001, A Space Odyssey, were amongst his favorite motifs to draw at grade-school. Influenced by music, particularly metal and electronic genres, Arriaga began writing science fiction epics all over his high school notebooks. By the age of 18 he tried to shoot his first short film with friends, a horror tale from a screenplay of his own. The film was based on images of religious afterlife and sequences of violence that were overtly influenced by a juvenile Tarantino phase. The experience was a disaster, the tape remains missing to this day.

Arriaga studied Electronic Systems Engineering in Monterrey, but made time to go to filmmaking lectures and taught himself film history and theory at the school library. He used the three-hour long drive to school to work on slightly improved movie ideas while listening to loud music in his car. The coming of the adult age and the landscape of Highway 57, up north in México, opened a road of new possibilities, more dramatic subjects began to appear throughout his stories. At the time, more elaborate and serious theories were taking place all around his body of work. Then he graduated from the Monterey Institute of Technology and worked as an engineer for many years. However, he continued to used his free time to work on short films and other productions, taking on work in whatever department that needed help.

After being invited to participate in a three module course given by FAMU in Monterrey he was selected to travel to Czech Republic to get a degree in cinematography at FAMU in Prague. While in Prague, he worked with Michael Gahut at FAMU studio and assisted many projects for the NYU-FAMU interchange program. A very early and rough cut of his thesis awarded him with a diploma and the recognition of his mentors. Since then he has traveled to Spain, Chile, Colombia and the US to film and practice.

Arriaga has been credited as Director of Photography for a comprehensive list of short films and promotional videos, and has completed two feature lengths. "The earth still moves" (Dir. Pablo Chavarría, 2017) received the Critics Award (CAMIRA - Cinema and Moving Image Research Assembly) in the Márgenes International Festival. "Prince of peace" (Dir. Clemente Castor, 2019) is still on festival rotation, and has received the PUMA prize for Best Feature in the Ahora México section at the 9 FICUNAM International Film Festival, as well as two Special Mentions, one for the Grand Prix and other for the Prix Du Centre National Des Arts Plastiques (CNAP), both in the Marseille International Film Festival.

Aside from filmmaking, José Luis also works on illustration an painting. His work can be seen on the cover of the poetry book “Descripción de la mentira” (Antonio Gamoneda, Atrasalante 2016), the novel “Ecos” (Atenea Cruz, FETA 2017), and the short story compilation “Corazones negros” (Atenea Cruz, An.alfa.beta 2019). He has exhibited his work around the country and this year his first auction is being prepared. An interesting ramification of his work as graphic artist is the visual aid he has made for the filmmaker community, in México, he has worked with Natalia Lopez, director of Splendor Omnia and the editor of several Carlos Reygadas films, developing visuals for her film debut. Arriaga also illustrated covers and visual aid for Amat Escalante’s more recent project “Estado del imperio”, which is in pre-production at the moment. He has completed a few hundred illustrations between the years 2010 and 2019, and keeps working on a timeline that compiles all his work from his early beginnings to date.

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