1100 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach, FL 33139


World Premiere


Country: USA
Language: English

Running Time: 71min
Film Year: 2015
Category: Visions

Monica Peña, Miami’s own boldly original experimenter, follows her fiction-doc hybrid debut Ectotherms with an equally beguiling and intriguingly structured tale of love and rot in the festering emotional swamp of The Magic City.

An attractive young couple spend an afternoon relaxing in the sanctuary of their garden, enjoying the sun-kissed delights of nature in repose and the lulling rhythms of their shared amorous pulse. Before long, however, they grow restless and uneasy as doubts, worries, bugs and other manifestations of the neurotic internal intermingle with the stifling humidity of their fecund and unruly external environment. Slowly but surely something wicked is worming its way into the couple’s precariously positioned bedrock.

Aided by a wildly evocative soundtrack from lead actor Brad Lovett (who moonlights as electronic musician Dim Past), Peña’s bracing vision pulls you along the fault lines of its emotional developments as the buoyancy of first love slackens. Deeply strange but also fiercely resonant, Hearts of Palm is an exhilarating reminder that stripping cinema down to its basic elements can sometimes penetrate primal feelings in ways that conventional narrative films rarely do. – Jaie Laplante

Hearts of Palm is also part of the Florida Focus film series.

This film is preceded by Swan Song of the Skunk Ape


Wednesday March 9th @ 9:30pm REGAL 18 Add to Schedule

Sunday March 13th @ 4:30pm REGAL 18 Add to Schedule


Director: Monica Peña
Producer: Monica Peña, Dennis Scholl, Lucila Garcia de Onrubia
Screenwriter: Monica Peña, Lucila Garcia de Onrubia, Megan Galizia, Brad Lovett

Music: Brad Lovett
Cinematographer: JL Rubiera
Editor: Monica Peña

Cast: Megan Galizia, Brad Lovett, Eloisa Garcia, Julian Yuri Rodriguez

Monica Peña

Monica Peña is a Cuban-American filmmaker who studied film at UCLA. Based in Miami, her feature debut Ectotherms premiered at the 2014 Miami International Film Festival and was later digitally distributed by the music label Other Electricities.