Plaza de la Soledad

A documentary about the courageous struggle of two old prostitutes to take their lives into their own hands.

Carmen (60) and Letty (71) long deeply for a new life full of hope and warmth; for a life where they can be advising mothers to their children and loving grandmothers to their grandchildren; for a life where they can enter into a financially independent relationship with their dearly beloveds. But they must first manage to leave the shadows of the past behind…

Seventeen years ago, multiple award-winning photographer Maya Goded (1967) started a photo book about the prostitutes of La Merced, a district of Mexico City. She became close friends with Carmen and Letty. The photographer’s attention affected the self-image of these two women. And now that the women want to start a new life, Maya films every step they take.

Plaza de la Soledad is centred mainly in La Merced, a district in the historic centre of Mexico City. In this noisy neighbourhood almost anything is for sale: from small puppies to wild monkeys, from all kinds of drugs to traditional medicines, from illegal movies to all forms of sex. Since the Aztecs, prostitution is rife here, and the streets are used as training centres for prostitutes from all over Latin America.

Carmen is determined to dig up the secrets of her past, but must take stock of her mistakes and accomplishments so she can start afresh. Letty finds love for the first time in the arms of a 34-year-old client and is willing to pay the price for their relationship, no matter how high.

We get to know Carmen and Letty better and better. We also get acquainted with their husbands, their colleagues, their children. The story draws us ever deeper into their lives and step by step we understand how difficult it is for them to escape La Merced. At a young age, something in them was destroyed to make them into good whores. Will Carmen and Letty succeed in overcoming this pain? Can they break the patterns they were taught when they were young?