Monday, October 07, 2019

"America": Filial responsibility in Mexico after an elderly woman, neglected, falls (and someone goes to jail)



The film “America”, directed by Erick Stoll and Chase Whiteside, was presented on PBS on Monday Oct. 7.  The 76-minute film (Lifelike Docs) was compressed to about 53 minutes.

“America” is the name of a 93-year-old grandmother in Colima, Mexico (on the southern Pacific coast, near a volcano), in the Serrano family.  One day, due to her oldest son’s negligence, she falls and is seriously injured and lies in her own excrement. The older grandson and brother takes care of her, but the youngest grandson returns from his own beach life to care for her.

The Mexican state prosecutes the father and the boys wait for the trial on a charge of neglect of an elder.  This charge is relatively uncommon in the U.S. but can happen. Judging from the film, the laws on eldercare in Mexico seem to be very strict. The older grandson was almost arrested.

The boys offer to take custody of her, as their dad is also a senior citizen.  He had been in jail for eight months.


The directors do a brief commentary, about young men showing intergenerational intimacy that may compromise their independence and sense of masculinity.

The link for the PBS trailer is here.  PBS did not offer a YouTube trailer. But it showed at a ReelAbilities film festival in NYC.

Wikipedia attribution link for p.d. picture 

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