Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Mecanica nacional

It took me a little while to get into the movie as I wasn’t sure what to make of the style of filming as the camera shots and scenes were sort of confusing. I noticed that there seemed to be a lot of dubbing of the characters voices and that a few scenes, especially when they were all at the field having the get together and it also looked like some parts were shot in a studio with some trees and countryside looked artificial.
This film is quite different from the previous movies that we have seen in terms of the women not being seen to be in a powerful role. The men are seen to be macho and controlling of their women and the marchioness is emphasized in the older men showing with typical ball cap, big cars, guns, alcohol, men all gathered around telling their points of views and stories, while women watching and talking about their husbands. And there was sort of a double standard going on where the women get blamed and accused easily of flirting and would end up getting treated badly but it seemed it was ok or defined differently when the men did it so they could get away with it. It also showed an aspect of the father as a hierarchy figure within the family as showing an extreme loyalty to family values and upholding his strictness by scolding the daughter and wife for their actions and also shows his weaker side as being passionate to his mother. The director possibly tried to portray the views he had of how culture and society was being portrayed at the time in the 70’s and used the different generations sharing the same space as a way to compare these differences. The old ways with the older generation and how they try to teach their children, but now these children have more resources and advantages than their parents so they have different views and also the influence of the free spirit 70’s which adds extra pressure on changing attitudes and views. I also noticed a difference in comparing los olvidados where there was not a sense of community or happiness, whereas in Mecanica nacional, it portrays the community as strong and together with concern and respect for each other like in the scene where everyone put aside their differences and came together to give their respects to the deceased mother in the field and on the drive back to town.


  1. I think it is interesting what you mentioned about using different generations in the same space to illustrate different views and dynamics of society in the 70s.
    It was good to see the different views, the conflicts, the complexities, and the double-standards inherent to the society in this film, as opposed to the other films which were predominantly from one point of view.

  2. I agree with a lot of your perspective on the film and the double standard between men and women. What's weird is that I found both depictions of communities believable; in Los Olvidados, I found it very realistic that these kids would feel pit against each other and the hierarchy would form within the community, while simultaneously, I found it also entirely believable that a community would be more connected and look out for one another. I don't know how much progress was reached in Mexico from the 1950s to the 70s, though, in reality.

  3. I agree with you. I think the double standard between men and women clearly showed the masochistic side of mexican culture and how women are disrespected in the family. Throughout the movie, the wife took care of the grandmother a lot more than the husband, however, at the end of the movie, the husband tried to deny her right to grief beside the grandmother. I find it sad how women's place are so easily jeopardized in a family.