La Yuma

(La Yuma)
Florence Jaugey | Drama, Fiction

2011 | 91 minutes | Mexico, Nicaragua, Spain

Nicaragua’s first full-length feature in 20 years, La Yuma tells the story of a young woman who dreams of transcending her bleak life in the slums of Managua by becoming a boxer.


Nicaragua’s first full-length feature in 20 years, La Yuma tells the story of a young woman who dreams of transcending her bleak life in the slums of Managua by becoming a boxer. Looking beyond the meager possibilities that seem available to her (and ignoring the advice of her gang-member friends), she finds solace and hope in her training and falls in love with a middle-class journalism student. With an extraordinary performance by Alma Blanco as Yuma, the strength, astuteness and determination of the main character reflect the feelings of a population that faces adversity and inequality. Jaugey’s film allows us the rare opportunity to get a glimpse of life in this Central American country where gender and class inequality are an everyday challenge.


"To say that La Yuma is an engaging story with a wonderful treatment from all involved is no understatement. Do not get the idea for a moment that this is a "female Rocky" picture. No one gets beaten to a bloody pulp, and there are no miraculous resurrections. But it is real; it is at times gritty, and it certainly has heart. I was sorry to see it end and can easily imagine it as a discussion starter in a women's studies course, or filmmaking course, besides being just a memorably entertaining experience. Highly Recommended. " — Elena Landry, George Mason Libraries, EMRO

"Blanco's exceptional lead performance" — Miami New Times

"The actress Alma Blanco, in particular, is perfect" — Eric Libiot, L'Express

"Blanco's passionate portrayal of Yuma make this somewhat familiar "female Rocky" fresh and appealing." —  MoMA

"She often evokes Fellini's early-sixties neorealist work, Nights of Cabiria in particular." — Rubén Rosario, Sun Post Weekly

"La Yuma is an excellent film." — Cine Invisible

"There are many Yumas and Yumos in the country, strong young men wanting to go out of scope of violence, not knowing what to do. In the movie there are ideas on how to do it. And do it with dignity. La Yuma did." — Confidencial Digital

"This movie encouraged reflection and critical discussion. Particularly, the movie drew people's attention to street crime, harassment, poverty, and gender inequality in Managua's slums. The audience was fascinated by topics such as the movie's production cost compared to a Hollywood super-production and the participation of non-professional or untrained actors. Furthermore, machismo behavior was discussed, and the audience analyzed differences between professional women boxers in the US and female boxers in the Nicaraguan context." — Mónica Rodríguez, Assistant Professor of Spanish and Translation Studies, UNC Charlotte

Main credits

Blanco, Alma (actor)
Benavides, Gabriel (actor)
Mayorga, Rigoberto (actor)
Jaugey, Florence (film director)
Jaugey, Florence (film producer)
Jaugey, Florence (screenwriter)
Sobalvarro, Juan (screenwriter)
Soberón Torchia, Edgar (screenwriter)

Other credits

Director of photography, Frank Pineda; editor, Mario Sandoval; music, Rodrigo Barbera.

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Academy Awards® - Nicaragua's submission for Best Foreign Language Film
South American Film Encounters Marseille - Best Actress
San Francisco Film Festival - Audience Award
Austria Latino Film Festival - Audience Award
Granado Film Festival Brasil - Jury Prize, Best Actress
Guatemala Icaro Film Festival - Best Actress

DIRECTOR: Florence Jaugey

NATIONALITY: Mexico, Nicaragua, Spain

YEAR: 2011

GENRE: Drama, Fiction


COLOR / B&W: Color

GRADE LEVEL: High School, College, Adults



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