Cesar Chavez

Cesar Chavez

5.0 1
Director: Diego Luna

Cast: Diego Luna, Michael Peña, John Malkovich, America Ferrera

     
 

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The life and career of legendary civil and labor rights leader Cesar Chavez is dramatized, following Chavez's mission to officialize the rights of immigrants and farm workers, as well as his personal journey as a husband and father. Outspoken but gentle, willful but soft spoken, the organizer's unique presence and unwavering commitment to non-violent protest would… See more details below

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Overview

The life and career of legendary civil and labor rights leader Cesar Chavez is dramatized, following Chavez's mission to officialize the rights of immigrants and farm workers, as well as his personal journey as a husband and father. Outspoken but gentle, willful but soft spoken, the organizer's unique presence and unwavering commitment to non-violent protest would make him an enduring symbol of freedom and equality for generations to come. .

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Jason Griffith
The fight for fair wages -- a timeless struggle -- is at the center of Diego Luna's biopic Cesar Chavez. The film follows the titular labor leader and civil-rights activist (Michael Peña) as he launches a movement in support of underpaid farm workers during the 1960s. Chavez and his fellow laborers are fundamentally pitted against Bogdanovich (John Malkovich), a wealthy farm owner trying his absolute damnedest to maintain the low-wage status quo out in his grape fields. In Bogdanovich's corner are powerful friends in government and law enforcement, on whom Bogdanovich relies heavily in order to carry out the will of his iron fist. But despite the seemingly uphill battle, Chavez's relentless persistence and supernatural ability to rally followers make the matchup less like David vs. Goliath and more like Foreman vs. Ali, with the fighters going blow-for-blow to the bitter end. Chavez's efforts to secure fairer wages begin with simple unionizing among the farm workers, and then quickly grow to the organizing of an effective labor strike. Bogdanovich is ultimately victorious in his attempts to break the strike, leading Chavez to take more drastic measures, including a march to the California state capital in Sacramento and a successful boycott on Bogdanovich's grapes. Bogdanovich then tries selling his product overseas to circumvent the stateside grape boycott, giving him temporary triumph, only to have Chavez expand the boycott internationally, which proves to be the final nail in Bogdanovich's coffin. Luna's lengthy background in acting undoubtedly contributed to his success in getting the most from his cast, whose heartfelt performances rang true from scene to scene. Everyone carried their weight on set, from Peña's masterful portrayal of everyman Chavez to Malkovich's stirring creation in the complex antagonist Bogdanovich. The hand-held camerawork, while at times overdone, allowed for a more intimate connection with our characters onscreen, who, like the shaky frame, were equally rough around the edges. While the balanced screenplay from writers Keir Pearson and Timothy J. Sexton does a nice job of pulling us in as it chronicles the events and milestones of the farm workers' labor movement, it did little to allow us to get to know Chavez himself, which you might not expect given the title of the film. We're told to believe that Chavez's only source of motivation comes from the need to ensure a brighter future for his family, but in the end it seemed more like he simply had a bone to pick with The Man. The B story following Chavez's frosty relationship with his oldest and increasingly withdrawn son Fernando (Eli Vargas) felt shoe-horned into the script, and provided little insight into who Chavez was as a human being when he wasn't serving as the face of a revolution. The film's goal to inspire is achieved, however, even if it falls short of truly showing us whom we're being inspired by. Anyone who can appreciate a worker's right to a fair day's wage can relate to Chavez's plight; Luna, Peña and Co. take care of the rest.

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Product Details

Release Date:
07/22/2014
UPC:
0031398198949
Original Release:
2014
Rating:
PG13
Source:
Lions Gate
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Sound:
[Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Time:
1:42:00
Sales rank:
8,032

Special Features

Closed Caption

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Michael Peña Cesar E. Chavez
John Malkovich Actor,Bogdanovich Senior
America Ferrera Helen Chavez
Rosario Dawson Dolores Huerta
Wes Bentley Jerry Cohen
Michael Cudlitz Actor,Sheriff Smith
Yancey Arias Gilbert Padilla
Mark Moses Fred Ross
Gabriel Mann John Giumarra Jr.
Jacob Vargas Richard Chavez
John Ortiz Eli Ordone

Technical Credits
Diego Luna Director,Producer
Michael Brook Score Composer
Enrique Chediak Cinematographer
Douglas Crise Editor
Pablo Cruz Producer
Lynn Fainchtein Musical Direction/Supervision
Maria Estela Fernandez Costumes/Costume Designer
Ivonne Fuentes Production Designer
Gael García Bernal Executive Producer
Frank Gaeta Sound/Sound Designer
Fernando Perez Gavilan Associate Producer
Lianne Halfon Executive Producer
Mauricio Katz Associate Producer
Jonathan King Executive Producer
Julian Levin Executive Producer
Heidi Levitt Associate Producer,Casting
John Malkovich Executive Producer
Larry Meli Producer
Rebecca O'Brien Executive Producer
Keir Pearson Original Story,Producer,Screenwriter
Vanessa Perez Associate Producer
Haim Saban Executive Producer
Miguel Schverdfinger Editor
Timothy J. Sexton Executive Producer,Screenwriter
Jeff Skoll Executive Producer
Russell Smith Producer

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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Cesar Chavez
1. Scene 1 [5:38]
2. Scene 2 [5:53]
3. Scene 3 [8:07]
4. Scene 4 [5:36]
5. Scene 5 [5:27]
6. Scene 6 [4:49]
7. Scene 7 [4:44]
8. Scene 8 [6:02]
9. Scene 9 [6:12]
10. Scene 10 [5:53]
11. Scene 11 [6:36]
12. Scene 12 [5:54]
13. Scene 13 [6:59]
14. Scene 14 [5:28]
15. Scene 15 [6:01]
16. Scene 16 [12:22]

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