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East Los Angeles and the Chicano Moratorium

December 9, 2015 - 7:30 pm
Ruby Cruz, Thomas Myrdahl, Nick Sherbin.

On August 29, 1970 in East Los Angeles, a peaceful march of more than 20,000 Chicanos, united in protest against the Vietnam War as part of the Chicano Moratorium movement, was violently interrupted by a massive law enforcement response.  The tragic events of that day left three dead, including prominent Mexican American journalist and activist, Ruben Salazar (1928-1970).  In recognition of the 45th anniversary of the march, we present an eclectic selection of short works that explore the Chicano Moratorium, its aftermath, and the people and culture of East Los Angeles from various perspectives.

Cinco Vidas (Five Lives)  (1973)

KNBC, 1/1/1973

Five residents of East Los Angeles—a grandmother, a principal, an attorney, a mother and a gardener—are profiled in this rich tapestry of a culturally vibrant and politically engaged community.

Betacam SP, color, 51 min.  Producer: Moctesuma Esparza.  Director: Jose Luis Ruiz.  Screenwriter: Moctesuma Esparza.  Cinematographer: Steven Larner, Jose Bengomo.  Editor: Donin Hoyer.  With: Ernestina Gomez, Vince Villagran, Percy Duran, Delia Cardenas, Tom Cruz, Ruby Cruz (Host).

The Murals of East Los Angeles: (A Museum Without Walls)  (1977)

An important early documentary snapshot of the Chicano mural movement that highlights the murals of Ramona Gardens and the work of artists such as Richard Ruiz, David Botello, Eduardo Ortiz and others. 

16mm, color, 37 min.  Production: RKO General.  Producer: Humberto R. Rivera, Heather R. Howell.  Director: Humberto R. Rivera.  Cinematographer: Humberto R. Rivera.  With: Richard Ruiz, Humberto Rivera, David Botello, Eduardo Ortiz, Judy Baca.

The Chicano Moratorium: A Question of Freedom  (1971)

An on-the-ground account of the events of August 29, 1970 at Laguna Park and their immediate aftermath directed by Thomas Myrdahl, then a student at Loyola Marymount. 

DigiBeta, color, 10 min.  Producer: Nikolai Sherbin, Thomas Myrdahl.  Director: Thomas Myrdahl.  Cinematographer: Nikolai Sherbin, Carlos Chavez, Jose Rivera, Thomas Myrdahl, John Hunt.  Editor: Thomas Myrdahl.