Journalist Erica Hellerstein describes the experience of watching a sneak preview of “Cesar Chavez” in a room filled with activists, young and old.
When I first heard that Diego Luna had directed a movie about the life of farm worker leader Cesar Chavez, I wasn’t quite sure what to think. To be clear, I, like many other starry-eyed fans, love Diego Luna: his mischievous half-grin, nonchalant scruff, and shaggy flop of hair. And I enjoy his films, too: “Y Tu Mamá También,” “Miss Bala,” “Rudo y Cursi,” to name just a few. But my doubts didn’t have anything to do with his body of work. I just wasn’t sure he’d be able to pull off a movie about such a triumphant moment — and movement — in our recent past. However, after watching an advanced screening of the film sponsored by UC Berkeley’s Center for Latin American Studies, I admit, happily, that I was wrong.