Loretta van der Horst
Brendan Byrne, Trevor Birney, Wout Conijn
In one of the world’s most dangerous cities, loyalties are everything. They can save your life, or just as quickly end it.
Street pastor Daniel Pacheco has won the fragile trust of key players from all sides of a complex conflict, including police, gang members and murderers. Obsessed with bringing peace to his streets, Pastor Pacheco risks his life by ‘saving’ gang members from the hands of their enemies.
Meanwhile Orlin Castro, a local crime journalist, gets a kick out of being the first at a murder scene. He is so successful in doing so that he sometimes arrives before the police. At first Orlin seems like one of many reporters looking for a juicy headline, but another side to him is revealed as he tries to survive his dangerous job.
As both men maneuver in a world where money talks and people keep silent, nighttime is most challenging. That is when gang members are most active in carrying out ‘missions’ and protecting their territories against their enemies. Gradually, those behind the crimes speak out. Matatan, a friend of pastor Pacheco is proud to be the area’s top assassin. He proves not everything is as it seems when it is revealed that he has an unexpected past as a pastor preaching to the poor. While the Pastor and Orlin invent new ways to avoid making enemies in their work, a gang leader called ‘El Viejo’ sheds light on his own incentives to kill, or not to kill.
Through the Pastor, the local crime journalist and the killers, Behind the Blood raises the question: when surrounded by violence, to what extent are one’s life choices down to free will, and to what extent is one’s life predetermined by ‘the rules of the street’?