Humble director and writer Darius Stevens Wilhere premiered the “Most Awarded Mexican Indie Film of the Year,” The Way Home.
Through stunning cinematography and a fantastic story, Darius has brought to life a celebration of Latino culture. This love story, set in the beautiful scenic views of Puebla, Mexico, takes romance to new heights and expresses the fragility of time.
The film follows Ricardo, played by Cayetano Arámburo, on his journey back to his hometown after his grandfather tragically passed away. Returning to his family and hometown, Ricardo rediscovers his roots and reunites with his childhood sweetheart, Paulina, who Renata Manterola plays.
“This love letter to Mexico,” as said by Dances With Film Festival, has won over 46 International Film Awards and 16 Official Selections. In addition, this past January, De Vuelta a casa (The Way Home) took home the “Best Feature Film” award at the Chandler International Film Festival in Chandler, Arizona.
Viewers at the festival acclaimed the film as a “beautiful story that touched their hearts” and, most importantly, raved about the passion and hard work Darius put into the story. One viewer stated, “Darius shared with us all the challenges he and the crew faced to make the movie. But I was really blown away with all the heart he put into this movie and was able to communicate all the magic of our country onto the big screen.”
Darius feels very connected with the storyline due to his family roots traveling back to Mexico. His wife, kids, and many friends are Mexican, and he wanted to emulate the magic that comes from the beautiful Mexican culture. Darius says, “The news and even films and movies usually show us the problems. To be honest, Mexico has its problems, but it also has its magic and so many beautiful things. This is what I want to reflect upon.”
With such a success story, you would not believe the hard work and challenges that the cast and crew faced during the creative process of the film. Darius played a principal role in making The Way Home, from picking the scenery for sets in Mexico to casting the film’s many parts.
“As a writer/director, I always write the script with a very clear vision of what resources I’m going to have to make that story. I know how many locations, how many shoot days, and how much crew I’ll need, and once I know that it’s even possible to make the film, I’ll let that side of my brain relax, and I’ll allow the ‘director hat’ to come on,” Wilhere said.
Due to the unfortunate events of the COVID-19 pandemic, Darius wanted to shed light on the importance of life and truly resonate with his viewers. Darius says, “The last few years were difficult for everyone, and a lot of us lost important people in our lives. Unfortunately, people who were older than us, such as our grandfathers and grandmothers, and this is what I wish to reflect upon and to ask the question, ‘How important are these people to you?’” Darius stresses the importance of this because Latino culture exudes the significance of family values.
Darius hopes to touch the hearts of many and portray the beauty of the scenery of Mexico as well as the beauty of its culture.
“Life is beautiful and fleeting, so do not take it for granted and ensure you’ve got your priorities straight. I really hope that the first thing the audience does after seeing the film is that they get on the phone and call up the people who they love most in life and tell them that and tell them how much they appreciate them,” Darius shares.
Learn more information about Darius and The Way Home here.