Shot on location in Puerto Rico, The Vessel is set in a town so ensconced in the aftermath of a tragedy the women wear only black. Ten years ago, a tidal wave struck the seaside village’s elementary school, killing all the children inside. A small community, to begin with, is suddenly threatened with obsoletion in one fell swoop. The local priest (Martin Sheen) tries the best he can to instill faith back into the community, but to make that happen, he will need the help of Leo (Lucas Quintana), a young man who drowned but miraculously awoke three hours later.

The Vessel is Julio Quintana’s first film as director, but he is far from a newbie to the business. Quintana is the protégé of three-time Oscar-winning cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki who, along with legendary director Terrence Malick—who is also an executive producer for The Vessel—developed a new and enchanting way of looking at the world. The Vessel contains Lubezki and Malick’s fingerprints, but Quintana eschews abstraction in favor of story, and he presents The Vessel in a straightforward manner with unabashed spiritualism. Streaming on Tubi.

A version of the above blurb first appeared in the pages of Boulder Weekly Vol. 24, No. 7, “Cine otro.”