La Mission

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La Mission is a complex movie that shows the everyday struggles of people in the world. The film showcases family values, working class values, minority struggles, and day to day survival in San Francisco, however, at the center of it all is the struggle that a father goes through trying to continue to love his newly discovered gay son while battling against everything he has ever known growing up. Being a sober, reformed inmate, Che Rivera works hard everyday to redeem himself, and to stay out of trouble. He has done this through his passion and love for taking classic cars, and making them into works of art . His son, Jes Rivera, helped him stay on the straight and narrow until his secret comes out. Che is not the only one that suffers though. Jes goes through just as much hardship and struggle as his father, but he thankfully still has his family and boyfriends support.

The journey that these two take is a very difficult one. I do not pretend to know the struggles that Jes has to deal with being part of the gay community, but I do know the struggles of being a child raised without a father due to him being in jail because of  drugs and alcohol, as well as, being identified as a minority group. At the time, you wonder what you did wrong to have your father taken from you, to hear and see your mother sobbing on the ground, and to be sitting in the back of a cop car listening to your brothers crying for our mother.  This happened when I was four years old, and even at that age I was able to remember the horrible conditions in which we lived, the struggle that my parents went through because they did not have any income to support us, and the violence that my father displayed due to being under the influence 24/7 everyday.

However, it was just a new beginning. My father was only in jail for five years and my mother was able to keep my brothers and I while attending rehab. They both came out as new people. They have both been clean and sober for over fifteen years, and the creator has blessed us with a good life. There are times when the past will pop up to haunt them, but they continue to battle the darkness for the happiness of their children just as Che does with Jes.  There will always be hardships in life, and every once in a while you will fall just as Che did when he took a sip of alcohol again, but there is always something in life that can lift you up again. It can be hard to find, but that light can be found in the most unexpected of places. For Che, it was the ceremony for the death of the kid that shot Jes. For my parents, it was the scene of watching my brothers and I taken away in the back of a cop car. Take it a day at a time and never let go of your loved ones.  Something good can come from it.

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One thought on “La Mission

  1. Hi Laila,
    I shared this with David Avalos so he could read your very moving writing about your family and La Mission.
    Best, Deborah

    Like

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