Bracero Stories (56:00, 2008). A multi-perspective documentary on the historic guest-worker program, focusing on oral histories of five former Braceros. Broadcast on PBS stations throughout the U.S. on Latino Public Broadcasting’s Voces series. Screened at multiple film festivals; awards include “Best Social Justice Film,” Tulipanes Latino Film Festival; “Audience Award-Best Documentary,” McAllen Art & Film Festival, “Jon Alonso Award for Cinematography,” Cine Sin Fin Chicano Film Festival.)
Bracero Stories is a bi-lingual video documentary exploring the personal experiences of five former “guest workers” who participated in the controversial U.S./Mexican government program granting temporary work contracts to several million Mexican laborers between 1942 and 1964. Reminiscences by the Braceros are interwoven with archival materials, forming a composite history of the Bracero experience. Though many of their stories detail the hardships encountered in the program, Braceros generally consider the experience a valuable one, and their recollections invariably convey a great sense of dignity. One rarely gets the feeling that they felt like “victims,” but that they were merely doing what had to be done under difficult economic circumstances. This collective portrait also reveals the considerable pride that former Braceros still feel regarding their important contribution to U.S. society.
Discussions in the media, past and present, generally represent the opinions of government and corporate policy makers, seldom focusing on the lived experience of the workers. By focusing on the their perspective, the film offers a little-known human story that remains vitally relevant to this day.
Juxtaposed with the personal recollections, interviews with other participants in the historic program assess the program’s effectiveness—and its justness, mirroring contemporary concerns about illegal immigration and the possible implementation of a new guest worker program. Ultimately, the film seeks to put a personal face on the concept of foreign “guest worker.”
There are three price levels for this DVD, based on where it will be used.
Each Home DVD is $20 USD.
Each Public Library/High School DVD is $50 USD.
Each University DVD is $100 USD.
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Cherry Lane Productions
25 Lower Hillman Road
Warwick, NY 10990
Region Code: All Regions (NTSC)
Format: Full Screen
Run time: approx. 56 mins.
Language: English and Spanish versions on DVD
Patrick Mullins, Producer/Director/Editor
Violeta Dominguez Lopez, Historian/Associate Producer,
Format: DVD/VHS, color and B&W, sound, English & Spanish versions, 56:00
© 2008 Patrick J. Mullins