The General
The General

The General

Director Natalia Almada

Production year 2009

Length 83min.

Country Mexico/USA/Argentina


Past and present collide in this documentary when filmmaker Natalia Almada, winner of the Best US Directing Award for documentary at the Sundance FF, brings to life audio recordings she inherited from her grandmother. These recordings feature Alicia Calles’ reminiscences about her own father—Natalia’s great-grandfather—General Plutarco Elվas Calles, a revolutionary general who became president of Mexico in 1924. In his time, Calles was called El Bolshevique and El Jefe Mոximo, or the foremost chief. Today, he remains one of Mexico’s most controversial figures, illustrating both the idealism and injustices of the country’s history. The General is a poetic and cinematic exploration of historical judgment, and a complex, arresting portrait of a family and country living under the shadows of the past.


Natalia Almada
Natalia Almada



Daniela Alatorre, Natalia Amada


Natalia Almada

Director of Photography

Chuy Chavez

Music by

Shahzad Ismaily, Marc Ribot, John Zorn


Alexandro de Icaza


Natalia Almada

Production company(ies)

Altamura Films

Natalia Almada

Born 1974, Sinaloa, Mexico. Her directing credits include All Water Has a Perfect Memory, an internationally recognized experimental short, and To the Other Side, an award-winning feature documentary about immigration and drug trafficking. Almada’s work has screened at Sundance, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Whitney Biennial as well as on ARTE and PBS. She is a 2008 Guggenheim fellow. She shares her time between Mexico and Brooklyn.


All Water Has a Perfect Memory (2001), To the Other Side (2005), The 8 (2009), The General (2009), El Velador (2011)

FILMS 2011