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imagineNATIVE: La Pequeña Semilla en el Asfalto

La Pequeña Semilla en el Asfalto

Dir. Pedro Daniel López López (2009, Mexico, 80 mins.)

I have fairly mixed feelings on about this film. On the one hand, La Pequeña Semilla en el Asfalto is very successful at what it sets out to do: that is, portray the struggles of young indigenous Mexicans who leave their homes and move to an urban environment. On the other hand, this film’s limited scope has the effect of limiting interest in the film itself.

Sometimes one of the strongest things an indigenous person can do is say, “I am here; I exist.” In that respect, this film is excellent. The four indigenous persons interviewed for this film (Dolores, Pascuala, Ronyk, and Flavio) speak candidly and give us a fairly comprehensive look at the life of indigenous people in Mexico. Their sense of alienation is palpable, and we cannot help but want to know more about them.

This, unfortunately, is the problem with the film: it does not tell us much beyond the four people interviewed. We are constantly told that indigenous people in Mexico suffer from serious social, economic, and political inequalities and injustices. However, we never get a really good idea of what most of these problems are, or how they affect the community at large. Wider indigenous life in Mexico remains largely a mystery to us.

– Dave