Who is Dayani Cristal?

Synopsis: An anonymous body in the Arizona desert sparks the beginning of a real-life human drama. The search for identity leads us back across a continent to seek out the people left behind and the meaning of a mysterious tattoo.
Genre: Documentary
Director(s): Marc Silver
Production: Kino Lorber Films
  3 wins & 4 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
85 min

The Migrant's Prayer.

The journey towards you, Lord, is life.

To set off...

is to die a little.

To arrive is never to arrive

until one is at rest with you.

You, Lord, experienced migration.

You brought it upon all men

who know what it is to live...

who seek safe passage

to the gates of heaven.

You drove Abraham from his land,

father of all believers.

You shall remember

the paths leading to you...

the prophets and apostles.

You yourself became

a migrant from heaven to earth.

Yohan? Is Yohan here?


Someone wants you outside.

I'm coming.

I want you to keep down.

You all know the code word?

What is this about a code word?


It's Juan, because he's the one

who pays for the land round here.

It's just so we don't have any

problems with drug smugglers.

- They're up over there.

- There's one.

- What? Border Patrol?

- Yes, over there.

We're coming up to the border.

Grab your water and be ready.

You're going to walk a lot,

if you fall behind...

there'll be no one there to help.

Get your water secure...

keep your bag close to you

and put anything shiny away.

We're here now.

Can you all see that ladder?

That's what you have to climb.

Now give it your best shot.

Hurry! Come on, faster!

Quickly. Go over there to climb up.

Climb up there quick.

In life, he was considered invisible...

an illegal.

Now in death...

he is a mystery to be solved.

The Mexican Consulate, good afternoon.

May I ask who's calling?

The Mexican Consulate, Gerado

speaking. May I ask who's calling?

A body has been found in the desert.

Was your brother born in 1991?

It's true, there are many

unidentified bodies here...

but none match

any of the clothes you've described.

Very well, sir. Thank you very much

for telling us that you found him.

The only thing they found

was a little prayer book.

- And the name on the tattoo?

- Dayani and Cristal.

- Good morning.

- Good morning.

Today, children, we are going

to learn where our country is.

- What country do we live in?

- Honduras.

- And Honduras is located in Central-

- America.


What province do we live in?

Francisco Morazan.

And what is the name of our village?

El Escanito.

He first said that he was leaving

to give me a better life.

He felt he hadn't given

anything to the children.

That's why he decided to go.

My mother has always sold chicken.

She's had this shop for about ten years.

I knew who he was...

but he didn't catch my eye.

He used to come here

supposedly to buy chicken...

because I was the one selling.

He went to see my sister-in-law...

and told her that he liked me.

You know how it is.

He asked me how old I was...

and if I had a boyfriend.

I said no, I didn't.

His excuse was that

he was buying chicken...

or drinks which my mother also sold.

He would just sit there.

I was helping my mother so he had

an excuse to come and watch me.

That's how it all started.

One way or another you have to survive.

That's how it is.

Who knows what country

borders the north of Honduras?


He was a husband and a father

with young children.

He left on the seventh of June,

we know that.

They found him

on the third of August...

3,200 kilometers from home.

It had taken him 58 days to get there.

Where are you going, man of little faith?

Where are you going

if there is no way out?

You'll say to him, I'm looking for God

I need him,

because I can't take it anymore

Pity me

Pity you

Pity on the world

I will never understand

the extent of the dangers he faced.

I can only try to retrace his steps...

and see where they take me.

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Mark Monroe


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Submitted on August 05, 2018


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"Who is Dayani Cristal?" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 31 Mar. 2020. <https://www.scripts.com/script/who_is_dayani_cristal%3F_23416>.

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