Agua fría de mar (Cold Water of the Sea)

France/Costa Rica 2010, Feature film, 80' | Director, Screenplay Paz Fábrega | DoP María Secco | Editors Nathalie, Alonso Casale | Sound Miguel Barbosa, Séverin Favriau, Carlos García, Fernando Soldevila, Diego S. Staub, Deborah Stauffer | Cast Montserrat Fernandez, Lil Quesada Morua, Freddy Chavarría, Annette Villalobos, LuisCarlos Bogantes | Production Temporal Films, Les films du requin, tic tac producciones, Isabella Films

"This is a study of the loneliness that comes from within, of moments when one feels separated from others, and the pain and heartbreak it brings at seven or at twenty three."
Paz Fábrega

In the middle of the night, a young and wealthy couple - Rodrigo (30) and Mariana (23) - are looking for somewhere to sleep on the Pacific coast in Costa Rica where they are spending their New Year's vacation. They find seven-year-old Karina who tells them that she has run away from home because her uncle 'touches' her. The couple decide to investigate the following morning. When they wake up, the girl has disappeared. Rodrigo and Mariana check into a hotel. While Rodrigo is away on business, trying to sell a property in the area, Mariana can't stop thinking about the girl. Since he can't do anything but wait, in her loneliness she becomes increasingly restless and distressed. Meanwhile, Karina has gone back to her parents, camping on the beach like many other families on holiday in the national park. After her mother punishes her for running away, Karina makes an alliance with some children who have been digging beach tunnels to hide from their parents.

Paz Fábrega chose an apparent paradise for her debut feature and has created an atmospheric, subtle and original film. As in her other films, Agua fría de mar deals with loneliness and the vulnerability of youth, placed in the context that is Costa Rica; a small country with stunning landscapes, a degree of isolation from the rest of the world and many stories untold. The title refers to a cold stream of water in the ocean which causes poisonous sea snakes to head for the beach!

German premiere


PAZ FÁBREGA was born 1979 in San José, Costa Rica. She studied photography and journalism before attending London Film School. She shot her graduation film Temporal in 2006 which has since been in competition at the Clermont-Ferrand, Tampere, Uppsala, Biarritz and many other international festivals. Her second short film Cuilos premiered August 2008 in the international competition at the Locarno Film Festival. Agua fría de mar is her first long feature. The film was developed at the Binger Film Lab and at the Sundance Screenwriters Lab and premiered in the Official Tiger Competition in Rotterdam 2010. Paz Fábrega is currently taking part in the 19th Cinéfondation - the Cannes Festival residence programme - in preparation for her next feature film Todos Nosotros.

Paz Fábrega
France, Costa Rica
Feature Film
Debut Feature Film Competition