The Other Side of the Wall

Two young teen siblings from Honduras are forced into parenthood as illegal immigrants in Mexico.
Year Released
Film Length(s)
68 mins
Remote video URL


The relationship between Ale and Rocío faces a big change when their mother is unjustly imprisoned and they naturally become parents of their little brothers. First, all in good disposition and humor until their situation as illegal immigrants in Mexico is confronted with unexpected emotions and gender roles, discrimination, immigration systems and inability to enjoy their youth let alone access to education. Eventually the communication between siblings begins to fail and they learn to believe in each other to find hope on the other side of the wall that threatens to separate them.


Alejandro (18), and Rocio’s (13) relationship is faced with the greatest challenge possible when their mother is imprisoned under unjust charges and they soon have to act as father and mother to their two younger siblings. Initially they promise to help each other and keep their family together until their mother is released but as undocumented Honduran immigrants their right to live, work and study in Mexico was already under threat. Soon the prison wall that keeps their mother away provokes other emotional barriers that prevent the brother and sister from understanding each other while facing discrimination, illegal immigration status, inability to study and even enjoy their youth.

Rocio is 13; she’s the second of the four siblings. Since her mother was sent to prison she has played the typical role of a mother in the family. As a promising young student she had to drop out of school and turn to duties of care and nurture for her younger siblings; like cleaning and cooking. She’s an extremely mature, strong headed, intelligent teenager seeking independence which was shattered at an early age as she struggles to fulfill the role of motherhood. Rocío, is also going through adolescence and shares responsibilities with Alejandro but she doesn’t want to lose him as a brother. Meanwhile, Alejandro is 18 and he’s the oldest of the four siblings. As the male figure he naturally became the head of the house as they awaited their mother’s case. He is also a husband to his young wife and soon to be father. While all living under the same roof, like Rocio, he too, had to leave his software engineering studies and focus on earning money for the family. He is honest and mature but he is still a young male teenager who has a hard time playing the role of a father.

These young siblings are confronted with unexpected emotions and gender roles, discrimination, unjust immigration systems and inability to enjoy their youth let alone access to education. Along their journey of hope and opportunity on the other side of the wall they strive through love, dedication and justice as these turmoils soon turn into light.

Director Commentary

Pau Ortiz, director of the film demonstrates a respectful, heartful approach which aligns with my values of non fiction storytelling and as the impact producer of The Other Side of the Wall. Pau was intrigued by this story when he was working at a non profit organization where he supported convicted women in the southern border of Mexico, overseeing their cases and their reinsertion in society - this is where the relationship with Rocio and Alejandro’s family blossomed. Pau and the family built an honest, genuine and respectful relationship allowing the camera to tell their story through courage, hope, humor and love as they faced unjust immigration systems, discrimination and all that the journey of immigration implies. He wanted to emphasize the power of love amongst families that go through such turmoil on the border.

I joined this team as the impact producer a year or so after I met Pau and Rocio at DocsMX, a documentary film festival in Mexico City in 2017 and felt an immediate connection by their bond and the film. Rocio was open, strong and very well spoken, she felt like a reflection of many young women who are seeking independence in the world and a fight for justice. After its successful traditional film festival circuit we knew that the film had the potential to reach broader audiences, specifically educational spaces. Our collaboration began to take form and we organically began organizing screenings in academic institutions, film clubs and government offices accompanied by study guides that promote engaging prompt questions and activities around the themes of the film. This story inspires a shift in societal discrimination toward immigrant families and motivates audiences to feel empathy, to seek justice and truth and to break down borders. The Other Side of the Wall uplifts immigrant families and celebrates that familial kinship and love that can overcome hardships.

Features and Languages

Film Features

  • Subtitles

Film/Audio Languages

  • Spanish

Subtitle/Caption Languages

  • English

Promotional Material

Promotional Stills

Resources for Educators

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