“Bless Me, Ultima,” based on Rudolfo Anaya’s best-selling Chicano novel of all time, will be released to more than 200 theaters across the nation this February 22.
The film adaptation of Bless Me, Ultima, rated PG-13, is an important milestone in movies with topics focusing on Latino families since this Mexican-American coming-of-age book has been banned or challenged from being taught at many schools or offered in some libraries because it contains adult language. The movie version now brings this important story to a new audience and in a new medium that allows Anaya’s characters to truly shine.
I received a screener copy of the movie and, not having had a chance to read the book yet, was mesmerized by the beautiful relationship between Antonio, 6, and Ultima, the curandera (medicine woman) that helped him come to this world and has remained his spiritual guide.
The character of Ultima brought me back to my days in Mexico and of meeting so many special people like her that embodied the spiritual richness and contrasts of the country. Ultima is a healer, a mentor, a wise woman that bridges the physical, natural and spiritual worlds. She’s also a fierce warrior and defender of that which is “good” and sacred.