Cuentos del Rio
Visions du reel industry 2019 - Media Library
Visions du reel industry 2019 - Media Library
Visions du reel industry 2019 - Media Library
Visions du reel industry 2019 - Media Library
Ecozine Film Festival Zaragoza 2020
Lux Film Fest
Prague Film Awards 2020


While a Chinese business-man wants to take control of the interoceanic route in Nicaragua, actor and teacher Yemn creates a play with the local kids to reflect on their history, their identity and the country‘s future.

The mythic San Juan river located between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans in Nicaragua, symbolises 500 years of colonisation and exploitation of resources and has seen over 70 canal projects fail. Now, a Chinese businessman is attempting to control the interoceanic route that Columbus had desperately been looking for when he reached the West Indies, thus creating both discontent and hopes for a better life amongst the Nicaraguans.

Actor and teacher Yemn returns to his native village El Castillo and turns the fortress ruins overlooking the San Juan river into a stage for the local youth theatre group, a sanctuary for open discussion and critical thinking.

While their families struggle with poverty and obligation to migrate to wealthy neighbour Costa Rica in order to make ends meet, the kids rehearse and write a play about their river’s history.They improvise and embody the numerous travellers who tried to control the river; pirates meet Spanish conquerors, American engineers fight against Indigenous chiefs.

Between reality and fiction, the kids reflect upon essential questions: What is their true identity? What can they learn from History? And at a time where freedom of speech has been repressed and a people’s revolt starts brewing, where is their country going to?




April - Media Library | Visions du Réel, Festival international de cinéma Nyon

October - Close Up Dokufest | Edinburgh - Winner best environmental documentary

November - International Documentary Film Festival - Festival dei Popoli | Firenze

November - SUNCINE Environmental Film Festival (FICMA) | Barcelona


16 – 17 January - Prague Film Awards

5 – 15 March - Luxembourg City Film Festival

8 – 15 Mai - Ecozine - Festival Internacional de Cine y Medio Ambiente | Zaragoza

3 – 19 Mai - Beldocs International Documentary Film Festival | Belgrade


12 March 2020
The 10th edition of the Luxembourg City Film Festival has been cancelled due to the corona pandemic and with it the Avant-Première of River Tales on the 14.3.
1 April 2020
Due to the cancellation of the Avant-Première and the closed cinemas River Tales is available online during the whole month of April: (Link available in Luxembourg)
8 April 2020
LIVE Q&A session via Zoom at 8.30 pm organised by the Luxembourg City Film Festival. Watch the Replay on Facebook:



Julie Schroell


Jesus Gonzalez & Julie Schroell


Frank Pineda

production sound mixer

Francois Martig

line producer nicaragua

Florence Jaugey (Camila Films)

drama teacher

Yemn Jordan Taisigue Lopez

film editor

Damian Plandolit

music soundtrack

Pascal Karier, Aaron Ahrends (Say Yes Dog)

sound editing

Capucine Courau

sound re-recording mixer

Michel Schillings

Color Correction

Raoul Nadalet

Technical Data

original Title

Cuentos del Río

english Title

River Tales

french Title

Raconte-moi le fleuve




Feature Documentary

original language



English / French


82 minutes

color / n&B


shooting format


screening format

DCP / Pro Res 442 HQ


Stereo / 5.1

production company

Calach Films

funded by

Luxembourg Film Fund

country of shooting



Julie Schroell
Director and Producer

+41 778158770

Jesus Gonzalez
Producer & Sales
Calach Films (Luxembourg)

+352 691435523