Son, Can’t You See I’m Burning?

Ariel Mahler

7:30 PM, Alamo Drafthouse, November 3rd

USA | 2023 | 4′ | English


In "Son, Don’t You See I’m Burning?" a grieving son navigates a world where reality is structured by fantasy, echoing the profound insights of Hegel and Lacanian psychoanalysis. As he confronts his mother's tragic death due to severe burns, his journey leads through a surreal dream sequence and culminates in a shocking awakening at her wake, where the facade of mourning unravels, exposing the unsettling and unrepresentable "Real" concealed behind the comforting screen of fantasy.

Director • Dirección
Ariel Mahler

Screenplay • Guión
Reuben Bernardo Tietz, Daniel Miramontes

Cinematography • Fotografía
Daniel Miramontes

Music / Score
Nicole Butcher

Sound • Sonido
Nicole Butcher

Production Design
Sandra B. Rodriguez

Edition • Edición
Ji-Ye Won

Producer • Productor
Gabriel Guitierrez, Raven Robinson, Daniel Miramontes

Cast • Elenco
Pilar Uribe, Arturo Tolentino


Ariel Mahler


Ariel Mahler (she/they) is an award-winning trans writer and director. She’s a recent graduate and scholarship recipient from the American Film Institute (AFI) Directing Fellowship. Ariel’s AFI thesis film, RE-ENTRY, received an Alfred P. Sloan production grant in 2023. Her short documentary, EVAN EVER AFTER, screened at festivals across North America and won the Audience Award for Best Florida Short at the Florida Film Festival. Ariel was a two-time finalist for Newfest’s New Voices Grant. Her screenplays have advanced to the top-five in ShoreScript’s Film Fund, the second round of the Sundance Development Track, and the final round of the WeScreenplay’s Diverse Voices Lab. Ariel produced DEATH AND BOWLING, a feature film that world premiered at OUTFEST in 2021, and was nominated for a GLAAD Media Award. In addition to her MFA from AFI, Ariel holds an MA in Theatre Education from Emerson College, and a BA in Human Ecology from College of the Atlantic. Originally from the East Coast, Ariel is currently based in Los Angeles. She is driven to tell trans stories about misfits and weirdos seeking authenticity through human connection.

She enjoys merging both fictional and non-fictional worlds in her filmmaking, and drawing upon experiences including working on director Terrence Malick's editing team. Her short films can be streamed on The New Yorker, Short of the Week, and Omeleto.
Katherine received her MFA in Film Directing from the University of Texas at Austin and a BA in Art History from Georgetown University.


Daniel Miramontes