The Milagro Beanfield War is a contemporary film written by John Nichols and directed by Robert Redford. It was produced by a Latino film maker, Moctesuma Esparza. The movie introduces the Mexican American population stories, history and sheds light on their culture. It is set a fictional town in Northern New Mexico and deals with a very small town in a rural area that is presented in the film as basically being unchanged for centuries. The film is based on a novel with the same name. The Milagro Beanfield War demonstrates that as long as oppressed people believe and act upon the messages of the oppressors, they will not have the ability to overcome their mistreatment individually and collectively. For example, in this film the problem comes from the developers coming into town and fraudulently acquiring the water rights to the area. The story of the film depicts the resistance on the part of one man who reclaims his family’s water rights and what that then leads to, in terms of the story. The film is light hearted, almost fable like in its attempt to tell a very hardedge political story. There is a compelling portrayal of cultural collision between Latinos and Caucasians in the film. The film displays an excellent depiction of unequal distribution of resources. The Milagro Beanfield War takes its theme the destruction of the land, and of a culture, in pursuit of economic profit. The tiny town of Milagro, where chickens and sheep share the streets with the random automobiles, exists (only barely) in the background of major development, specifically that of the Miracle Valley Recreation Area, an Anglo-backed enterprise consisting of golf courses, ski slopes, and condominiums for the wealthy to enjoy in their leisure time. The people of Milagro are Hispanic; previously farmed the land, but they lost their irrigation rights through political finagling. When the land dried up, the majority of the farmers sold out to the developers, who now own the water...
References: Esparza. (Producer) (1988). The milagro beanfield war [DVD].
Koester, J., & Lustig, M. (2010). Intercultural competence. (Sixth ed., p. 117, 152, 170). Boston:
Allyn & Bacon.
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