‘Plaza Catedral,’ ‘Prayers for the Stolen’ Deal With Violence Inflicted Upon Youth in Latin America

Mexico’s Tatiana Huezo and Abner Benaim of Panama, whose respective dramas, “Prayers for the Stolen” and “Plaza Catedral,” made the coveted shortlist in the Oscars’ international feature category, have quite a few things in common.

Both have mainly worked in documentary filmmaking, although in the case of Benaim, he made a hit comedy in 2009, “Chance,” before focusing on nonfiction films.Neither are strangers to the Oscar experience.

Benaim has represented Panama twice.

With its first submission to the Oscars in 2014, an account of the 1989 U.S.

invasion of Panama, “Invasion,” and in 2018 with “Ruben Blades Is Not My Name,” which gets up close and personal with the actor, multi-Grammy winner and activist who also served as minister of tourism and ran for president of Panama.“Prayers for the Stolen” is Huezo’s first narrative feature and her second turn at representing Mexico, the first time was with her documentary

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