Cecilia Aldarondo

Nominated for Truer Than Fiction Award


Director: Landfall


Through shard-like glimpses of everyday life in post-Hurricane María Puerto Rico, Landfall is a cautionary tale for our times. Set against the backdrop of protests that toppled the US colony’s governor in 2019, the film offers a prismatic portrait of collective trauma and resistance. While the devastation of María attracted a great deal of media coverage, the world has paid far less attention to the storm that preceded it: a 72-billion-dollar debt crisis crippling Puerto Rico well before the winds and waters hit. Landfall examines the kinship of these two storms – one environmental, the other economic – juxtaposing competing utopian visions of recovery. Featuring intimate encounters with Puerto Ricans, as well as the newcomers flooding the island, Landfall reflects on a question of contemporary global relevance: when the world falls apart, who do we become?


Cecilia Aldarondo is a documentary director-producer from the Puerto Rican diaspora whose work has been supported by the Sundance Institute, Firelight Media, Field of Vision, Chicken and Egg, ITVS, the Jerome Foundation and many others. Her feature documentary Memories of a Penitent Heart had its world premiere at the 2016 Tribeca Film Festival and was broadcast on POV in July 2017. She is a 2021 New America Fellow, a 2019 Guggenheim Fellow, two-time MacDowell Colony Fellow, and 2017 Women at Sundance Fellow. In 2019 she was named to DOC NYC’s 40 Under 40 list and is one of 2015’s “25 New Faces of Independent Film.” She teaches at Williams College.