• Tribeca Film Festival

    Nora Ephron Award
  • Huelva Ibero-American Film Festival

  • Trinidad & Tobago Film Festival

  • FIC Santiago Int'l Film Festival

  • Loft Film Festival

  • Atlantic Int'l Film Festival

Spanish, English, with English subtitles

With Scarlet Camilo, Lia Chapman, Jean Cruz, Richarson Díaz

Why you must-see this film. Because it is an example of the brilliant New Wave of Dominican Cinema. It tackles an incredibly important theme and it is written by the talented team behind ‘Pelo Malo’ (Mariana Rondón, Marité Ugás). Moreover, the film won the Nora Ephron Award at the latest Tribeca Film Festival.

Beautifully juxtaposing the realities and expectations of a young girl approaching womanhood in the Dominican Republic, Boca Chica shines a light on the insidious child sex trade and the lives it seeks to destroy.

Director Gabriella A. Moses exposes the community’s complicity by way of twelve-year-old Desi who is constantly exposed to unwanted advances and crude comments from older men, both visiting and homegrown. She works at the family restaurant alongside her mother Carmen, who encourages the behavior, in a once serene beachside town now bustling with foreign tourists.

Music is Desi’s escape. She dreams of parlaying her nascent musical talents into a full-fledged singing career. When she stumbles across a group of local rappers that set themselves apart from the scene, her passions begin to boil to the surface. She seeks to avoid the common fate of growing mature before her time and falling prey to the morally bankrupt adults in her life who encourage her to forgo her innocence for profit.

Boca Chica explores themes of identity, family, codependency, and truth, and exposes how local social norms present the sexualization of very young girls as a path to survival.

The director, Gabriela A. Moses, may be available for an in-person or virtual Q&A. A suggested speaker fee of $300 to be agreed directly with the filmmaker is recommended in all cases. Contact us at eric@pragda.com to learn more.


“Sparked by the light of Camilo’s performance, alongside daily life in the Caribbean, Boca Chica is a quiet film that finds impact in bitter truth and hopes unbound.” – Sherin Nicole, AWFJ

“Its arresting performances, working-class setting, and partial hip-hop soundtrack are reminiscent of Andrea Arnold’s Fish Tank and Alice Rohrwacher’s The Wonders. A tale of growing up in a cruel world and family secrets, Moses’s quietly magnetic debut urges us to question the dreams we want to pursue and the façades we may live.” – M.J. O'Tool, Hammer to Nail

“Catches the uneasy intersection that can trap females, of an exuberant culture, curious tourists, and service businesses sustained through remittances of diaspora relatives. This strong sympathy for a Caribbean girl is refreshing.” – Nora Lee Mandel, Maven's Nest

“Gabriella A. Moses and her woman-led crew crafted the film to explore young womanhood and deferred dreams in the Dominican Republic. With its: ‘so crisp it feels like being there’ cinematography and a sense of terrible things lingering at the periphery, Boca Chica compels us to question what is happening and where things went wrong.” – Sherin Nicole, AWFJ

About the Director
Gabriella A. Moses is a director, writer, and production designer based in Brooklyn, NY, and a graduate of New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. Gabriella has received support from the Sundance Institute, New York Women in Film & TV, Tribeca Film Institute, The Black List, and SFFILM. She was most recently featured on the 2023 Black List Latinx List and was selected for the 2022 LALIFF x Netflix Latinx Inclusion Fellowship Program with her short Sin Raíces.
Her directorial debut feature film, Boca Chica, was filmed in the Dominican Republic. She believes in sharing stories with underrepresented protagonists that test viewers’ perceptions of identity and their imaginations.
Notes on Film

“Tourism is king in the Caribbean and it both benefits and burdens those around it. As an artist, it’s important to center narratives around protagonists that aren’t historically represented. It’s also important to acknowledge the complexities and nuances in Caribbean communities’ complicity in propagating, upholding, and even enabling toxicity.

Sometimes traditional ideas need to be eradicated. In the Dominican Republic, in January 2021, Law 1-21 was approved, which finally eliminated all legal grounds for child marriage, it safeguards children and protects them from all forms of violence. This was JUST two years ago, the year we filmed Boca Chica.

Machismo culture has long left young women vulnerable to abuse and sex tourism is a branch of tourism so it exposes young women, even more, to the commodification of their bodies and legislation has a role in that allowing more insidious things like trafficking to take place. Trafficking is a global issue happening in far more privileged countries like the States. We need to talk about that. We need to protect our young women.”

– Gabriella A. Moses, Director