Dir: Eugenio Polgovsky and Mara Polgovsky. Mexico, 2022. 64 min


Minimalist in resources and filmed from the unusual vantage-point of a second-floor apartment window, Malintzin 17 portrays two parallel expressions of parental care. For seven days and seven nights filmmaker Eugenio Polgovsky and his five-year-old daughter, Milena, contemplate a nurturing dove nesting her chick on a hazardous entanglement of electric cables situated right outside their balcony. The dove endures the cold and torrential rain, while Milena makes puzzled inquiries to her father about the bird’s location, its stillness, the meaning – and perils – of filming it, its true nature (is it a robot?), and potential ways to assist it (does she need food? Will the chick learn to fly?). Wielding a handheld camera from this elevated point of view, which parallels the bird’s, the film constructs a microscopic yet powerful environmental critique of nature’s entrapment within the aggressive infrastructures of modernity.