“I think killing a person… yes, it’s bad, but it’s not that difficult. But loving another man… that’s… that’s not natural.”
That chilling line represents the murky moral and spiritual conflict at the heart of Unforgivable, an eye-opening short film that will air as part of VICE‘s documentary series, The Short List with Suroosh Alvi.
From filmmaker Marlén Viñayo, Unforgivable follows the story of Geovany, a former hitman for the infamous 18th Street Gang who is serving his sentence in a Salvadoran isolation cell. While in prison, he quit the gang and, instead, joined an Evangelical church that has “lavished God’s forgiveness on him.” But there’s one thing that, in this church’s eyes, not even God can forgive: Being gay.
The documentary gives us glimpses into both life in the prison, as well as the church in question, which believes that “God compares the homosexual to a dog, to an animal.”
But, despite what he and those around him believe, Geovany has fallen in love with another man, and it’s clear that there’s a real connection between them. “‘They are going to kill us,’ I told him. ‘I don’t care. I’ll die happy because I’m with the person I love.'”
Viñayo’s film has been playing the global festival circuit where it’s picked up plaudits like “Best Short” at Amsterdam’s International Documentary Film festival in 2020, and won the Gabo Award in 2021, a special distinction honoring the best in Spanish and Portuguese-language journalism.
The doc will make its The Short List premiere on September 1, when VICE will air it followed by an exclusive conversation between the director and renowned journalist Suroosh Alvi.
You can watch the short teaser trailer for Unforgivable below, and then learn more about how to watch The Short List films on the VICE website here.