Who is Dayani Cristal? (2013) Movie Script

The Migrant's Prayer.
The journey towards you, Lord, is life.
To set off...
is to die a little.
To arrive is never to arrive
until one is at rest with you.
You, Lord, experienced migration.
You brought it upon all men
who know what it is to live...
who seek safe passage
to the gates of heaven.
You drove Abraham from his land,
father of all believers.
You shall remember
the paths leading to you...
the prophets and apostles.
You yourself became
a migrant from heaven to earth.
Yohan? Is Yohan here?
Someone wants you outside.
I'm coming.
I want you to keep down.
You all know the code word?
What is this about a code word?
It's Juan, because he's the one
who pays for the land round here.
It's just so we don't have any
problems with drug smugglers.
- They're up over there.
- There's one.
- What? Border Patrol?
- Yes, over there.
We're coming up to the border.
Grab your water and be ready.
You're going to walk a lot,
if you fall behind...
there'll be no one there to help.
Get your water secure...
keep your bag close to you
and put anything shiny away.
We're here now.
Can you all see that ladder?
That's what you have to climb.
Now give it your best shot.
Hurry! Come on, faster!
Quickly. Go over there to climb up.
Climb up there quick.
In life, he was considered invisible...
an illegal.
Now in death...
he is a mystery to be solved.
The Mexican Consulate, good afternoon.
May I ask who's calling?
The Mexican Consulate, Gerado
speaking. May I ask who's calling?
A body has been found in the desert.
Was your brother born in 1991?
It's true, there are many
unidentified bodies here...
but none match
any of the clothes you've described.
Very well, sir. Thank you very much
for telling us that you found him.
The only thing they found
was a little prayer book.
- And the name on the tattoo?
- Dayani and Cristal.
- Good morning.
- Good morning.
Today, children, we are going
to learn where our country is.
- What country do we live in?
- Honduras.
- And Honduras is located in Central-
- America.
What province do we live in?
Francisco Morazan.
And what is the name of our village?
El Escanito.
He first said that he was leaving
to give me a better life.
He felt he hadn't given
anything to the children.
That's why he decided to go.
My mother has always sold chicken.
She's had this shop for about ten years.
I knew who he was...
but he didn't catch my eye.
He used to come here
supposedly to buy chicken...
because I was the one selling.
He went to see my sister-in-law...
and told her that he liked me.
You know how it is.
He asked me how old I was...
and if I had a boyfriend.
I said no, I didn't.
His excuse was that
he was buying chicken...
or drinks which my mother also sold.
He would just sit there.
I was helping my mother so he had
an excuse to come and watch me.
That's how it all started.
One way or another you have to survive.
That's how it is.
Who knows what country
borders the north of Honduras?
He was a husband and a father
with young children.
He left on the seventh of June,
we know that.
They found him
on the third of August...
3,200 kilometers from home.
It had taken him 58 days to get there.
Where are you going, man of little faith?
Where are you going
if there is no way out?
You'll say to him, I'm looking for God
I need him,
because I can't take it anymore
Pity me
Pity you
Pity on the world
I will never understand
the extent of the dangers he faced.
I can only try to retrace his steps...
and see where they take me.
Out of 58 days, it took him
only two at the most...
to reach the Mexican border...
at Tecun Uman.
Excuse me.
Are we near Tecun Uman yet?
- We're almost there.
- Really?
We're very close.
Are you going that way as well?
- Yes, we're headed north.
- Me too.
- You're going north as well?
- Yes.
- We can go together.
- And from there?
We might go through to Texas.
And what are you looking for there?
I'll see if I can get
some gardening work.
- Gardening?
- Yes, I know a lot about gardening.
We'll see if I get a job.
This is the oldest story,
the very first book.
The one that begins with an adventure.
In it we all play the main characters.
We carry our hopes
and virtues as our baggage...
whilst never forgetting
what we left behind...
always longing for the place
we came from.
We're going to reach
the promised land. -Yes.
We'll get caught, they'll send us back.
Then we'll try it all over again.
And they sometimes
let me play the part.
This is my little girl.
Ah, children.
- They're young.
- Yes, they are.
- Do you miss them?
- Yes.
- And your family?
- Yes, I miss my little girl.
"What is she doing now?"
When you phone her,
you say, "How's my little girl?"
And she says, "Daddy,
when are you coming back?"
Just like the song.
"When are you coming back?"
"Just a little while longer."
Do the rafts come often?
If they don't come,
we go in and wade across.
My new friends take me
to the border of my country, Mexico.
They then explain how to cross it.
In this moment of holy glory...
the message, my friend and brother, is...
Christ values the sinner.
If anyone here is engaged in vice...
or, glory to God, brought down by sin...
it doesn't mean you are worthless.
God values you all.
As it is eternally written. In the name of
the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
God bless you all.
This is the word of God,
as it is written.
How much is it?
- The toilets are free!
- Let's figure out a price, otherwise...
Come on, let's go.
There are no guards, no checkpoints.
You don't need a passport here.
Perhaps all borders should be like this.
I wonder if he crossed here...
on these rafts...
among friends.
Without a doubt...
the one thing we know about the man
with the Dayani Cristal tattoo...
is that he was not alone.
He would show up smiling.
When he wanted to borrow something...
I would see him come
through the door, smiling.
I knew he needed something
so I would start smiling too.
That was how he was, always smiling.
He was the same with children
as he was with adults.
His little girl meant a lot to him...
because she was his only daughter -
the other two were little boys.
Yohan was good at making friends.
He was the kind of person
who liked having lots of them.
He was humble and hardworking...
and he really liked having friends.
Every day he went to work with crops...
such as corn and beans.
We often came here with Yohan to cook.
His favorite thing
was to bring a chicken.
He was in charge of plucking it
and everyhing. I did the cooking.
After, we would go
to the thermal baths nearby.
We'd bathe there for a while.
In the evening when it got late,
we went home.
When he was little...
we didn't live together.
He grew up with his mother...
but he always visited me...
because I worked
in a small stall in Tegucigalpa.
I sold avocados, bananas, mangoes...
melons and watermelons...
and all kinds of fruit like that.
Right now you could say...
that very few people
have enough to survive on.
Good afternoon.
I'd like to change quetzals for pesos.
How many?
360, I think. I'll just check.
Yes, 360.
360 times 1.5.
That comes to 540 pesos.
- 540 pesos.
- Great.
- Thank you.
- Welcome.
He had to travel with enough money
to pay the smuggler.
1,500 dollars.
It was probably everything he had.
Yohan made the journey
mainly because...
he felt he had very little money.
In fact...
he had some debt problems.
He said he was going to make money
so we could live better.
He didn't want me to suffer.
But I told him it didn't matter.
I would have gone hungry.
I only wanted to be with him.
Here migrants become easy prey.
Everyone knows that you need money
to cross to the north.
The bodies of 58 undocumented men
and 14 women were found...
bullet-ridden in this warehouse,
en route to the USA.
The citizens from Honduras,
Brazil, El Salvador and Ecuador...
were intercepted by members
of the criminal organization Los Zetas.
For all those who seek
safe passage through this country...
there are minimum security standards...
to avoid exposure to criminal networks.
And this is the wager.
Can you make it across Mexico
with your family's future in your pocket?
A round of applause
for Jesus this evening.
El Escanito is the land of Jesus Christ!
A round of applause for Jesus!
It's difficult...
one of the hardest decisions
you'll ever make.
You know you're leaving
everything behind.
It's really tough.
You could say
it's a decision about death.
Death is what you come up against
most on the road.
From one day to the next,
you decide that you're off.
You go with the hope that
you'll actually reach the USA.
Even though you haven't arrived yet
you look back one last time...
because you know deep down
that you may never return to Honduras.
You get a lump in your throat.
No, you never turn around.
You just keep going.
Two hundred kilometers
north of the Guatemalan border...
we catch the train in Arriaga.
The migrants call it "The Beast."
Hi. How's it going?
When are we leaving?
Soon. The train is hooking up
the railcars ahead.
- Really?
- Yes.
The Beast snakes its way
over 1,000 kilometers...
through the heart of Mexico...
to the north...
to the United States.
It's dangerous. When it jolts,
the people standing up fall off.
Many people have fallen that way.
You just grab on here and that's it.
- And these are the gondola cars?
- Yes.
You have to hold on tight.
This is a slow one.
- Just grip it.
- Okay.
When the train starts,
you might run into immigration...
so jump with your feet apart.
Land on your feet
because it pulls you down.
- Down?
- Yes, so make an open jump.
You climb down when it's going slow
then you jump facing forwards.
- Then you run, it's not going fast.
- Of course.
Shall we go over there,
to the one we just saw?
- Yes?
- Okay.
Hi, there.
At first, it is loud...
and powerful.
But then you fall into its rhythm...
like riding a horse for the first time.
You're not fully in control.
In reality, you have no control at all.
It is dangerous but beautiful,
and that makes you relax.
You climb up with your food and water...
and you feel happy.
- Here you are.
- Thanks.
- You're welcome.
- No problem.
Are you going to the USA?
- Yes.
- What part?
- San Francisco.
- We're going to Los Angeles.
We're going to Piedras Negras
if we're lucky.
- Which way are you going?
- Through Arizona.
I'm afraid of the desert.
It's the shortest way, I think.
That's the funny thing...
it's so close but so far.
The walk.
You're right there
but there's still a big walk left.
The danger is going to sleep
and falling under the wheels...
or a gang robs you
or they want to kidnap you.
- Are they burning garbage here?
- Yes.
I personally haven't seen any kidnappings.
But we've seen many train deaths.
About 10 kilometers from Ixtepec...
we found someone
who had just been killed by a train.
- Is it your first time?
- Yes.
- And yours?
- Yes.
And yours?
It's your third?
You're the veteran.
Thousands set out on that journey...
but not everyone makes it.
I have rarely felt as alive
as when I was on top of that train.
It wasn't because the fear of death
was there along the way...
but the feeling of fraternity
we shared on that endless trip.
Hold on tight!!
Yeah, otherwise-
Watch out! Immigration control!
Stick your head out
in case they're at Ixtepec.
I really hope they're not there.
They worry about me...
because now we tame
"The Beast" together.
How does the song go?
I ride over needless
and broken dreams
A clueless prisoner
of this daily jungle
Like a dry leaf that drifts in the wind
An imaginary flight over true stories
I sail over the sea of exact things
Let us sleep, assholes!
When I was young,
we weren't deluded like they are now.
People were afraid of the trip
and of jumping on the train.
Those who have been...
came back saying
how beautiful the train was.
People started to get more excited.
Now, as soon as they're 14 or 15...
they're ready to risk it all
to get to the US.
All right.
Thanks a lot.
Take care.
He never called me Dad.
He would just say "My old man."
He wanted to tell me something, he
was going to the US to try things there.
I told him not to go,
you don't know what could happen.
He replied that he was going
so I told him to go and wished him luck.
I hoped God would
keep him safe on the journey.
On his arrest, he told authorities
he had crossed the border over ten times.
The first time was when he was 14.
He was detained for a minor drug
offense near Portland, Oregon.
They never put him in prison for it.
He was sent to a detention center
and then deported back to Honduras.
Before crossing...
the smuggler tells you to leave behind
anything that can identify you...
to change your name
in case they catch you.
Yohan felt a lot of pressure
to make this trip.
I think he thought it was necessary.
Money was tight...
because of the boy's illness.
This is Yohancito, my son.
He's eight years old.
When he was two, he got a fever.
He was hospitalized.
Three days later,
they said he had leukemia.
I didn't even know what it was.
They explained that
it was cancer of the blood.
It made me very sad...
I never imagined I would see
a child so ill in a hospital bed.
He caught pneumonia in the hospital.
They told us that he was
going to die that night.
He was seriously ill.
I bought him a little coffin
with a shroud and everyhing.
If God doesn't want
to take someone, he doesn't.
They said that if we did
exactly as the doctor ordered...
he would get better,
because he was so young.
I had to borrow money
for his appointments.
I had to find a way to pay for it.
Yohan said he'd decided to go...
that there was no other way,
that he had to go.
Breakfast is ready!
Be quick!
We chose this spot so they can come
as soon as they get off the train...
which is extremely important.
First and foremost, this home
represents safety for them.
Good morning.
Remember to erase your number
when you're finished talking.
Yes, I will. Thank you, sir.
Otherwise, someone else will see it.
It's a constant flow of migrants
which no one can really stem.
The kidnappings can't stop it...
nor can state strategies...
however organized
and sophisticated they are.
Migrants are not a threat,
they are an opportunity.
They come with values
and great things to offer.
Poor people are the spiritual reserve
of the world.
Everyhing is going well, sister.
I'll come any way I can.
Some days I eat and some I don't.
I'll do everything I can
to come and see you.
Please tell my mom
in El Salvador to pray for me.
Okay then.
Tell her I'm fine and not to worry.
I'll call her if I need money.
This is one of over 50 shelters
on the railway lines through Mexico.
Like a kind of secret train station.
- This is very spicy.
- It's got a kick.
Look how much you put in.
A hot meal,
the chance to relax, to rest...
and reenergize
for what remains of the journey.
Hondurans, Guatemalans...
Salvadorans, Mexicans.
Here we're all on the same team.
The other team.
Now you take the train
from here to go-
To Medias Aguas.
Medias Aguas to Veracruz.
It's a point which joins
the two train lines...
from Coatzacoalcos and Medias.
It's a hot spot for kidnappings
more than anything.
Do you know anyone
who's been through Arizona?
- Arizona?
- Through the desert.
I did.
You went through the desert?
I spent three nights in the cold.
It was freezing.
Then in the day it was very hot.
You do get sick.
I was unwell when I got there.
They caught me near Tucson.
Imagine you're walking at night.
If you rest for five minutes,
you'll freeze.
You have to just keep going
so you don't freeze.
If you stop for half an hour
it's very hard to get up again.
But are you not less likely
to get caught there?
No, it's the same.
The American dream
isn't worth that much...
to risk your life in the desert.
It's worse for those
who have never done it.
It's like flipping a coin -
one person's luck
isn't the same as the other's.
This year.
If you don't know about the shoes...
Thanks a lot.
Have they given you coffee?
That's good.
I have a prayer here,
I don't know if it appeals to you.
The Migrant's Prayer.
The journey towards you, Lord, is life.
To set off, is to die a little.
One has never arrived
until they are at peace with you.
Migrants are heroes.
They are like rays of light...
shining on the things we must change.
They are heroes who fight
not only for their families...
they are fighting to change the story
of the US and Mexico.
Migrant heroes.
In the end, they are considered illegal.
A few kilometers from the border
between Sonora and Arizona...
there is a town called Altar.
where you make a final offering
before crossing the desert.
If you make it this far on the journey...
the promised land is within sight.
But the last steps are always the hardest.
On the other side of the wall,
you find the USA.
Prima County, Arizona.
July 30 was the last time
we heard from him.
I was at home when they called.
An aunt who lives
in Tegucigalpa told me...
that Yohan's photo
was in the newspaper.
The newspaper came
and we started to read it.
It said when it happened
but it didn't say that he'd died.
Deep down...
I always kept aside some hope...
for a lot of things.
Sadly, he died in the desert...
but not because I didn't help him.
I met him there.
He asked me where I was from,
I said Honduras and so did he.
We were very happy,
talking about our hopes.
One or two days into the journey...
we arrived at a rest area.
At that point,
he was already not feeling well.
He said he couldn't walk anymore.
His stomach was hurting.
I told him that we weren't
going to leave him...
we would stick by him
for as long as we could.
So we carried him along,
each of us took an arm.
Everyone helped him...
because we felt like he was one of us.
He was very worried.
He was thinking about his wife and children.
Then he said he was going to die...
because he felt very ill.
We walked on for three or four days.
He couldn't walk or even stand up.
That's when I felt compelled
to ask him what I should do.
He said we should keep going,
rather than stay with him...
because we might be
arrested and deported.
Hopefully, he would be okay.
I covered him with a jacket...
and left some water by his side.
It was really hard for me
when I left him by that tree.
I made that decision...
because I also have a family.
I had a little girl on the way.
He told me not to worry,
he knew we would meet again.
This is his daughter, Dayani Cristal.
He carried her name on his chest.
It was his dream to get the tattoo,
he'd wanted it for a while.
I asked if it hurt.
He said that it hurt
but it was worth it for his daughter.
The pain didn't bother him,
he said he didn't care.
It's an indescribable kind of pain...
an incomparable pain...
a wound that will never heal.
As I understand,
the United States is investing...
billions of dollars on that wall.
Why invest in something
that is inanimate?
It's a dead investment.
Why not invest in human beings?
Every day I give thanks to Him.
God may have taken him,
but he didn't want me to be alone.
Although he is dead, he is here with me.
I can bring him flowers whenever I want.
Other mothers
are still waiting for their sons...
but maybe they're not alive anymore.
The journey towards you, Lord, is life.
To set off, is to die a little.
To arrive is never truly to arrive,
until one is at rest with you.
You, Lord, experienced migration.
You took Abraham from his land...
father of all believers.
You, yourself, became a migrant
from heaven to earth.
Dilcy Yohan Sandres Martinez...
died 20 minutes by car
from the city of Tucson.
He was 29 years old.
He left behind his wife
and his three children...
Elvin, Yohancito...
and the youngest...
Dayani Cristal.
Published 24/09/2014