Jeri Jacquin

Coming to VOD as well as iTunes, Amazon, Google Play and Vudu from writer/directors Eduardo Maytorena and Wayne Mitchell as well as Candy Factory Films is SOLEDAD.

Raquel (Montanna Gillis) is an excited young girl about to go to prom. Going with boyfriend Preston (Chase Austin) she is believing this is a night to remember. A limo with driver Victor (Jesse Celedon) begins the drive to their high school.

On the way Preston begins kissing and caressing Raquel under the watchful eye of Victor. When the young man gets forceful with the young girl, she tells him repeatedly to stop. Finally the driver has had enough, and does a discipline number on Preston leaving him on the street.

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That doesn’t sit well with older brother James (Matthew Keeler) who wants Victor’s head on a platter and Raquel’s parents have called the police believing the driver has taken their daughter. Well, trouble isn’t anything new for Victor but he isn’t about to leave Raquel on her own.

Together, Raquel and Victor have their own adventure through the streets of Los Angeles making this a different kind of prom night!

Gillis as Raquel is a young girl who clearly has an image of what her prom night should be. Excited to be sharing the night with Preston, it all turns sour in the worst way. It would be an unlikely pair that creates the best night and Gillis’ portrays her character in a daring way. I appreciated that about her performance.

Austin as Preston clearly portrays him as a young man with 1) no manners, 2) a sense of entitlement and 3) a parent’s worst nightmare! What happens to this character (and no I’m not going to give it away) is richly deserved and very satisfying for me as a parent. I know that means I took a certain scene personal but when you see it – you will too! Keeler as brother James lets it be known that douchebaggyness doesn’t fall far from the family tree.

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The winner is clearly Celedon as Victor. This character knows where he has been and where he doesn’t want to be again. That being said Celedon gives this character care, concern and compassion all wrapped up in a nice limo drivers suit. I really enjoyed not only how he handled the little upstart (because I’d have done worse) but how he took the young girl under his wing – that doesn’t happen anymore.

Other cast include Roseny Carrero as Consuela, Hal Dion as Anton, Natassia Halabi as Lindsey, Sean MacCuish as Sean, Marcela Macia as Rosa Linda, Magen Mattox as Monica, and Eduardo Maytorena as Ernesto.

Candy Factory Films is a forward-thinking, filmmaker-friendly multimedia company dedicated to producing and distributing high impact, unique and compelling films. Their own media library include award-winning and acclaimed films across every genre with a commitment to creating and fostering communities around independent and progressive cinema.

SOLEDAD is the kind of film that is filled with surprises. This is an original story that doesn’t hesitate to call it everything like it is. There isn’t any sugar coating of the characters nor their reaction to what is a night of craziness.

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The film also isn’t in a hurry to tell the story of Raquel and Victor which I appreciated. I wanted to see what else they would do and how they would handle it completely and not a hap hazard outcome. The ending is perfection and had it been any other way I might have had to find my own awesome badass limo driver (just kidding) to make it right.

This film won the Grand Jury Award with Honorable Mention for Eduardo Maytorena and Wayne Mitchen from Dances with Films. Also, Official Selection from the 31st Chicago Latino Film Festival, San Francisco Latino Film Festival, St. Lawrence International Film Festival, 200 Festival Internacional De Cine De Puerto Madryn, New Filmmakers Los Angeles and the 29th Wine Country Film Festival.

In the end – there’s right, there’s wrong, and there’s tonight!