LAFF 2012: Meet a Real Life Magic School Bus in Remarkable Trailer for ‘La Camioneta’

Welcome to one of the most moving and technically beautiful trailers we’ve ever had the pleasure of posting in the name of film festival coverage.

Mark Kendall‘s La Camioneta: The Journey of One American School Bus is just that – a documentary that charts the “retirement” of a decommissioned school bus sent to Guatemala to be reinvented as a “camioneta,” the most common public transportation vehicle in the country. But being a camioneta is not easy, and neither is being a camioneta driver, as Kendall’s film teaches us that in the past six years alone nearly one thousand drives and and fare collectors have been murdered due to vicious demands by local gangs. Kendall’s film weaves together the camioneta’s tale with that of five men who either make or drive the vehicle, and if the final film is even half as visually interesting and emotionally stirring as this trailer, La Camioneta will be one of the finest docs to play at the festival.

The film had its World Premiere at SXSW in March, won the NAHCC Award at the Nashville Film Festival in April, and was supported by the Sundance Institute Documentary Film Program, the Jerome Foundation, IFP, and the Film Society of Lincoln Center. Check out the film’s trailer after the break, along with screening information for LAFF.

La Camioneta will have two screenings at the Los Angeles Film Festival, one on June 17th at 220PM and one on June 19th at 730PM.

Go Hollywood with all of our Los Angeles Film Festival coverage

Kate is an entertainment and culture writer and editor living in New York City. She is also a contributing writer for,,, Vulture,,, The Dissolve, Screen Crush, New York Daily News, Mental Floss, and amNY. Her previous work can also be found at MSN Movies, Boxoffice Magazine, and She lives her life like a French movie, Steve.

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