El Violin is a black and white musical treat with deep political implicationsEl Violin is not for the faint of heart. It’s a gem for those who love slow meditation on topics as varied as music and ambition.
A relative short length film imparting photo journalistic quality to its black and white frame, it packs a punch on conflict especially between haves and have-nots of Mexico. The lead actor is a hardy 80 year old musician first and an actor only by chance. His wrinkles are written with decades of experience that light up the screen with emotions. The narrative is primarily presented through interactions between 3 generations of peasant guerrillas and the army personnel with the beautiful Sierra Madre in the background. If you love any one subject from history, photography, music, peasant oppression, you will enjoy the film but if you love all these, the film is going to haunt you for a very long time. Look for a fine cinematic political statement when the old man explains to his grandson the source of conflict –
In the beginning of time , the ancient gods created the earth, the sky, fire, the wind and all the animals; Then they also created man and woman. They all lived in harmony, But one of those Gods was mischievous and he gave mankind envy and ambition. When the other gods found out, they punished the mischievous god.
Then they removed the ambitious people of the earth. But some of them were accident left behind. And then there were more and more and more, and they wanted to own everything. They deceived the good people and little by little, they took away what they owned, until they got everything. They drove them out of their forests. The good people felt that this was not fair. So they turned to the Gods for help. But the gods told them to fight on their own that their destiny was to fight. The ambitious people had become powerful so the good people decided to wait. and their land became dark and desolate.
Then, the good people returned to fight for their land and their forests because it belonged to them. Because their parents had made it for their children and the children of their children and that’s what we will do. We will go back.
When will better times come?
One day you will know.