Written and produced by British filmmaker and musician Duncan Bridgeman, the “Hecho En Mexico” film gives an unbiased look at Mexico, its people, its culture and its music, as well as presents the good, the bad and ugly in a way that does not condemn or judge.
With beautiful cinematography, Bridgeman takes the viewer to all corners of Mexico where we can see a captivating scenes such as a traditional Day of the Dead celebration at a cemetery where you hear a child explain his understanding of the celebration. In another scene you see the innocence of kids having fun by diving in water that is adjacent to a polluting factory.
The scene in which Lila Downs sings to her “Nana Tonantzin” (mother goddess) at the front of the altar of a small, quaint church shows the power of faith as presented by Bridgeman. In a very minimalist manner, that scene alone creates a strong spiritual connection with the viewer. When you see the faithful on their knees as they pay their respects to the Virgen de Guadalupe, the film’s most memorable phrase: “even atheists in Mexico consider themselves Guadalupanos”, makes clearer sense.
By presenting various genres of music, including traditional, folkloric, indigenous, pop, rock, rap, classical and electronic, Bridgeman creates a platform to show a landscape of a Mexico that is note widely known. Ruben Albarrán and Meme Del Real from Cafe Tacuba, Kinky, Carla Morrison, Lila Downs, Banda Limón, Alejandro Fernandez and other heavy weight Mexican artists, join the documentary by sharing their personal experience and love for the Aztec land.
Bridgeman casually intertwines their perspective with that of Mexico’s brightest journalists such as Elena Poniatowska, Juan Villoro, philosopher Don Miguel Ruiz, or actors like Diego Luna and Daniel Gimenez Cacho.
“Hecho En Mexico” also shows various taboos within the country, such as women’s rights, government, machismo and religion.
If you are Mexican or have any emotional connections to Mexico, it is almost impossible not feel proud about the country after watching the film. But regardless of your nationality, religious beliefs or musical preference, “Hecho en Mexico” is a film about people. It is a film that will leave a lasting impression on you in one way, scene, phrase, song, or another.