A new feature-length documentary about the Huichol (Wixárika) People, an indigenous group who live in the mountains of western Mexico, has been released. Huicholes: the last peyote guardians is a must-see movie and is already winning praise and awards. Equally importantly, it is helping to raise funds and support for the Huichol as they fight to retain full control over their ancestral territory in the face of threats from federal authorities and multinational mining companies.
- Watch the full documentary (via Vimeo)
The IMDb movie database describes the movie as, “The urgent story of the mystical Wixarika People, the Huicholes: one of the last pre-Hispanic alive cultures in Latin America. Their struggle against the Mexican government and multinational mining corporations to preserve Wirikuta, their most sacred territory and home of the famous peyote cactus. The mining activities of the Canadian companies that got the concessions in 2010 to prospect this protected area, rich in silver, gold and other minerals, are seen by the Wixarika and their supporters as a great menace for the delicate biodiversity of this unique ecosystem, listed by the UNESCO as World Cultural and Natural Heritage. An unequal and controversial fight from today that triggers the global debate between ancient cultural values, the exploitation of nature and the inevitable development of the peoples.”
I have to agree with my long-time editor and colleague David McLaughlin that this documentary about the Huichol portrays “Canadian commercial imperialism at its worst.”
To learn more about the film:
- Huicholesfilm.com (the film’s home page)
- Huicholes The Last Peyote Guardians (The film’s facebook page), and
- Filmmakers Sign Historic Agreement With Huichol Authorities in Mexico City