Mexican Americans: ‘We Gotta Know About John Wayne AND Pedro Infante’

Is there another two minutes of a film that speak about what it is to be Mexican American in the United States? We don’t think so.

In 1997, Gregory Nava wrote and directed SELENA. Fifteen years later, Nava’s words, interpreted by the great Edward James Olmos (Abraham Quintanilla) as a young JLO (Selena) and Jacob Vargas (Abie Quintanilla) roll their eyes and listen, still resonate.

“And we gotta prove to the Mexicans how Mexican we are, and we gotta prove to the Americans how American we are, we gotta be more Mexican than the Mexicans and more American than the Americans, both at the same time. It’s exhausting. Damn. Nobody knows how tough it is to be a Mexican American.”

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