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Chronicling the birth of a modern American movement, Cesar Chavez tells the story of the famed civil rights leader and labor organizer torn between his duties as a husband and father and his commitment to securing a living wage for farm workers. Passionate but soft-spoken, Chavez embraced non-violence as he battled greed and prejudice in his struggle to bring dignity to people. Chavez inspired millions of Americans from all walks of life who never worked on a farm to fight for social justice. His triumphant journey is a remarkable testament to the power of one individual's ability to change the world.
- This is a biography based on the life of the legendary activist for
migrant workers' rights. This is a big showcase for lead Michael
Pena, while other known stars such as America Ferrera, Rosario
Dawson, and John Malkovich only have very small roles. Some language
and violence make the film a bit too intense for young children
though most parents will find it to be an appropriate educational
film for pre-teens and up.
Berardinelli, Internet CriticFull Review Above Average ...while Cesar Chavez can be viewed as a useful educational tool for those unfamiliar with the title character or the circumstances that transformed him into a figure of greatness, it's only moderately successful as a slice of dramatic cinema.
Roger EbertFull Review Below Average The shame of this is that "Cesar Chavez" comes off as a wasted opportunity precisely because it does successfully return us to an era of important political change.
USA TodayFull Review Good 'Cesar Chavez': A compelling tale of activism, resolve.
Entertainment WeeklyFull Review Average It seems like a waste of talent, but worse still, "Cesar Chavez" squanders an opportunity to revisit a story worth retelling.
Note: The rating
above is our interpretation of what the critic would give this movie based on
their review. We are not affiliated with these critic's in any way.
1962. Jackie Robinson is the first African American inducted into the
Baseball Hall of Fame. Astronaut John Glen becomes the first American to orbit
the earth. Johnny Carson hosts his first Tonight Show. The Beatles release their
first album. President Kennedy institutes a blockade of Cuba for the first time
in history. He also authorizes federal troops to integrate the University of
Mississippi on behalf of James Meredith, the first African American to enroll
Notable too in this tumultuous year of firsts - Cesar Chavez founds the
United Farm Workers. Chavez, who would become the legendary labor leader and
world-renowned pacifist, set his course in motion and the lives of thousands of
others with this nascent union. For more than a century, farm workers had been
denied basic human rights in the fields and communities of California's
agricultural valleys. Chavez was well acquainted with this particular injustice
- as a child, he toiled alongside his family and countless others as a migrant
farm worker. After a stint in the Navy, he found his calling with the Community
Service Organization, a civil rights group. He ultimately rose to national
director of the CSO. In fact, his work there also represented his first regular,
paying job, no small thing for a young man with a growing family. Yet he gave it
up to devote himself to the farm workers, to improve their lives, to shine a
light on their contributions and unfair working conditions. His selfless
determination would inspire thousands and spark a powerful, transformative
movement that focused international attention on the plight of the farm workers.
What began as a specific and local cause became a transcendent and universal
appeal for justice.
Chronicling the birth of a mass grass roots American movement, Cesar Chavez
tells the story of the epic 1960s Delano grape strike and boycott as well as how
Chavez was torn between his duties as a husband and father, and his dedication
to leading farm workers out of poverty and discrimination. Passionate but
soft-spoken, Chavez embraced non-violence as he battled greed and prejudice in
his struggle to bring dignity to long-suffering people. Chavez also inspired
millions of Americans from all walks of life who never worked on a farm to fight
for social justice. His triumphant journey is a remarkable testament to the
power of one person's ability to change the world.