Overly blunt, which limits how well it can work as a narrative or message
When a film is too well-meaning or sincere, I find myself conjuring up the image of a hippy mumbling incoherent but well-meaning sentences. In the case of Nacido de Nuevo that image is a bit "we're all one, y'know, like connected in one body man right?". This well- meaning sentiment has an even broader layer added to it by virtue of it directly referencing Trump policies in its content. For the record, I am not an US citizen, but certainly would have voted Democrat (reluctantly) in the face of Trump's isolationist and poorly constructed agenda. That said, it does not mean that I enjoy sitting in the choir for a parade of short films to come and confirm how right I was to feel this way.
To be fair, Nacido de Nuevo is far from the worst at this, but it is still pretty unsubtle in what it does and how it does it. A border patrol agent who lost a child finds himself confronting an illegal who is pregnant and giving birth during her entry into the US. In case you do not get the challenge to the idea of drawing lines and building walls from this alone, we even get a wall soundbite from Trump thrown into the mix, just to be sure. This limits the film. Such films will never reach the Trump voter, or convince them they were wrong – so it means it is playing to the choir. Speaking from the choir, I already have a broad and unsubtle reminder of the damage of a Trump presidency, and that is Trump himself.
Technically the film is impressive – it looks and sounds very good, but the content is not there to make it something as smart or impacting as it wanted to be. Indeed, the bluntness of its moral message is a limiting factor in how it works, which is a shame.
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