Bless Me, Ultima

  • Type: Movies & TV
  • Age Category: Adults
  • Genre: Drama
  • Recommended by: Eric S.
  • ISBN/UPC: 043396428690
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A film adaptation of a classic book

Rudolfo Anaya’s book by the same title was published in 1972 and is considered to be a classic of Chicano Literature. After reading it for my book discussion group during Hispanic Heritage Month, I had the opportunity to watch the film. This 2013 film adaptation brought the story to life in a format that may be more accessible to those who may struggle with the book, because of the Spanish expressions that are interspersed throughout the novel. Except for a few things, the film stays true to the plot of the book, which is set during World War II in New Mexico. Both the film and the book depict a coming-of-age story in which a young boy, Antonio, who immersed in a culture of Catholicism, must come to terms with the existence of good and evil in the world and conflict between them. These questions arise when an old woman, Utima, who is a traditional native healer, moves in with his family. In addition to the plot, the connection and intersection of Mexican and Native American cultures are an integral feature of this story.