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'Alambrista!' depicts harsh realities of life as a Mexican immigrant

by Tonya Durlach

Sept. 30, 2011 | WMU News

Publicity photo from film Alambrista.
Domingo Ambriz plays Roberto in "Alambrista"
KALAMAZOO--The Western Michigan University Center for the Humanities will present a free, public screening of the film "Alambrista!" at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 7, in the University's Little Theatre.

"Alambrista!" is the 2002 Director's Cut of Robert M. Young's critically acclaimed film that depicts the harsh realities of Mexican life on both sides of the border. The film follows the trials of a young Mexican who, following the birth of his first child, crosses the border into the United States in search of the American dream for himself and his family. It is a stark portrait of the life a Mexican immigrant who faces the discrimination, alienation and economic depravation of living a life outside of the boundaries of law and society.

"Alambrista!" received critical praise and a number of awards, including a Camera d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival and one of the Best Small Films of 2005. The 2002 director's cut has a run time of 96 minutes and is not rated. It is shown in Spanish and English with English subtitles.

A discussion with Guillermo Martinez will follow the film screening. Martinez is a longtime advocate of migrant and seasonal farm workers' rights. He is a retired State of Michigan employee for the Department of Energy, Labor and Economic Growth. He currently works with the Van Buren Intermediate School District as a coordinator for the Parent University Project.

Martinez was born in Texas, and lived the life of a migrant farm worker after moving to Michigan with his family in the early 1950s.

Parking and directions

The Little Theatre is located at the corner of Oakland Drive and Oliver Lane on WMU's East Campus. Free off-street parking is available behind the theatre.

For more information, contact Jason Aiello, University Center for the Humanities, at or (269) 387-1811.