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A Day Without a Mexican

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A Day Without a Mexican is a satirical comedy-drama directed by Sergio Arau and released in 2004. The movie highlights the experiences of characters in California after one day when all Latinos disappear mysteriously.

The movie features various characters and their reactions to the sudden disappearance of Mexicans, from politicians to average citizens. The film starts with a TV newscaster reporting the disappearance of Mexicans in Los Angeles. The people in the city wake up to a strange phenomenon. There are no Mexican workers, housekeepers, gardeners, or cooks, and this causes pandemonium in the city.

The film incorporates different stories of various characters who are dealing with the aftermath of this event. As people begin to realize the extent of their dependence on Mexicans, they begin to panic. The governor of California and his aides devise a plan to address the crisis, but the absence of Mexicans has a significant impact on the economy and community, which proves to be more profound than they anticipated.

In one of the most affecting storylines, a wealthy white lady, Mary Jo Quintana (Caroline Aaron), whose family owns a grande estate and several vineyards, becomes increasingly frustrated with her missing maid, Tania (Melinda Allen). She is so used to Tania that she cannot function without her. She tries to find replacement Mexicans to fill in Tania's role but struggles to find dedicated staff the way Tania is.

In another hilarious storyline, a Mexican-American newscaster, Lila (Yareli Arizmendi), and a Mexican border patrol officer, Jimmy (John Getz), wake up one morning to realize that they both woke up with white skin. They soon discover that they are the only Mexicans left in California. Due to the change in their appearance, they face ridicule from others who believe they are foreigners. Despite being treated like outsiders in their home state, Lila and Jimmy try to make sense of the situation.

The film portrays the struggles of people with different backgrounds who have been forced to think critically about their daily lives where Mexicans are involved. The lack of Mexicans reveals the cracks within society, which often go unnoticed when the invisible labor force is present.

Director Sergio Arau uses the film to tackle issues such as immigration, labor laws, and race relations, depicting the stereotypes and prejudices experienced by the Latino community in California. The film is provocative and carefully approaches the controversial issues that the plot raises. The title, A Day Without a Mexican, is a play on the slogan of the 2000 United Farm Workers Strike, "A day without farmworkers is a day without food."

The film features a unique structure where it divides the characters into different groups with specific themes, such as white women, politicians, and border patrol agents. Each plotline reveals how the absence of Mexicans has affected different sectors in the state. The film relies on a mix of comedy and drama to address the critical and sensitive issues it raises.

Overall, A Day Without a Mexican is a thought-provoking and meaningful film that challenges the viewer. It sheds light on how much the Latino community contributes to the United States and the state of California, and it questions the treatment of those who work hard to make it happen. The film sparks conversation and discussion on difficult issues, just as the best films can do.

A Day Without a Mexican is a Comedy, Mystery movie released in 2004. It has a runtime of 100 min.. Critics and viewers have rated it mostly poor reviews, with an IMDb score of 4.8. It also holds a MetaScore of 30.

Sergio Arau
Caroline Aaron, Tony Abatemarco , Melinda Allen
Also directed by Sergio Arau
Also starring Caroline Aaron
Also starring Tony Abatemarco
A Day Without a Mexican is available on .