Teresa, a fellow fan of Benjamin, asked me to post her thoughts about “La Mission” that she had the chance to see.
I got to participate in a screening and discussion of ‘La Mission’ in October 2009. Benjamin, Peter, and their co-producer Ms. Patel participated at Washington DC’s National Museum of the American Indian. The movie was really enjoyable to me; it really feels like Peter’s and Benjamin’s love letter to their old neighborhood. Thanks to spirited acting, I felt a lot of warmth and connection to the characters and their little corner of the world. Peter’s script did a great job exploring all the conflicts — at the personal, family, community, and even national level.
The discussion afterward was quite stimulating, too, with many exchanges on the conflict themes, the need for open hearts/tolerance/acceptance, and so on. Having it at the National Museum of the American Indian was really special to Peter, and he brought out a lot of details around the various ethnic cultures in the film and in the world. Some discussion came up about the way the film was crafted (including one woman who wanted more info on the scene where Benjamin danced around while ironing some clothes for a night out… we just couldn’t help but enjoy Benjamin’s good looks and good moves!).
It is wonderful that the film has received so much positive attention in the last year!