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A Twelve-Year Night 2018

A Twelve-Year Night | La noche de 12 años | Compañeros

A Twelve Year Night-La noche de 12 anos-Companeros

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The only ones who are defeated are those who lower their arms.

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About A Twelve-Year Night 💬

  • Inspired by a true story.

This film is based on personal accounts from three of the most important figures in modern-day Uruguay: José ''Pepe'' Mujica, former President of Uruguay, Mauricio Rosencof, famous writer and poet and Eleuterio Fernández Huidobro, former Defence Minister of Uruguay.

  • The only defeated are those who lower their arms.

September 1973. Uruguay is controlled by a military dictatorship. The Tupamaro guerrilla movement has been crushed and dismantled the previous year. Its members have been imprisoned and tortured.

  • 12 years of isolation.

On an ominous autumn night, three Tupamaro prisoners are abducted from their cells as part of a secret military operation that will last for 12 years. From that moment forth, the prisoners will be rotated through several barracks all over the country as they are subjected to a macabre experiment; a new form of torture with the objective of surpassing the limits of mental endurance. The military order is very clear: ''Since we couldn't kill them, we are going to drive them insane''.

For over a decade, the prisoners will remain isolated in minuscule cells where they spend most of their time hooded, bound, in silence, deprived of basic needs, undernourished, and with their senses reduced to the bare minimum.

  • Endless darkness. Limitless courage.

Their bodies and minds pushed beyond their limits, A TWELVE-YEAR NIGHT tells the story of how they managed to survive, maintaining their will and strength by recreating their own world, vision and fantasy in order to escape the terrible reality that condemned them to inescapable madness.


What is left of a man after everything has been stripped away? Uncommunicated, isolated in time, with no stimuli and no tangible place to hold on to, his own senses start to betray him. But deep inside there is something that nobody can take away: his imagination. A TWELVE-YEAR NIGHT is, above all, a descent into the abyss. Based on a true story, it shows how three men were gradually dispossessed of everything that made them individuals over 12 years. They endured a physical and mental process designed to drive them insane with the ultimate goal of destroying any resistance within their deepest selves. They were forced to reinvent themselves from the remainders of their human condition in order to resist one of the most sinister ordeals imaginable.

As director and writer, this project has taken me more than four years of research and documentation. One of the key challenges was to avoid making a prison film, but rather an existential journey. The military order was very clear: ''Since we couldn't kill them, we will drive them insane.'' Beyond a meticulous historical recreation of the events, I sought to portray an aesthetic and sensory journey, allowing the audience to experience how to survive such an inner battle.

The 3 actors (Antonio de la Torre, Chino Darín and Alfonso Tort) had to undergo a very demanding mental and physical conditioning program (each lost around 15 kilos) in order to bring us closer to the extreme circumstances they suffered. The staging aimed to make us feel next to them, immersing us in the struggle that a man orchestrates in order to remain human.

It was a dark journey, but also a very rewarding one. Full of complexities and challenges, the film reaffirmed my belief that, even in those moments when circumstances may lead us to believe that everything is lost, human strength and endurance should never be underestimated.

Álvaro Brechner

A Twelve-Year Night Movie Details 🎥

Directed by

Álvaro Brechner

Writing Credits

Álvaro Brechner (Written by)

Eleuterio Fernández Huidobro and Mauricio Rosencoff (Book)


Antonio de la Torre

Chino Darín

Alfonso Tort

Soledad Villamil

Sílvia Pérez Cruz

César Troncoso

Nidia Telles

Mirella Pascual

Álvaro Armand Ugón

Soledad Gilmet

Eduardo Recabarren

César Bordón

Juan José Caiella

Music by

Federico Jusid

Cinematography by

Carlos Catalán

Category: EFA, European Film Award Winner

Genres: Biography, Crime, Drama, History

Countries: Uruguay, Spain, Argentina, France, Germany

A Twelve-Year Night Official Trailer

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