Radical Cinema

While writing the script for my film MACHETERO, i played RICANSTRUCTION’s 1st album Liberation Day for inspiration. As I went through the writing process the songs started to spill over into the script and seep into the very structure of the film. In a way it made sense that this would happen, Liberation Day was a concept album about Puerto Rico’s violent struggle for independence. MACHETERO was turning out to be the same thing shaped in part by the songs from the album.

MACHETERO's narrative was literally shaped by Liberation Day. The songs are like a modern day Greek chorus that add another level of narration to the film. A level of narration that brings a macro perspective to the film. Breakfast in Amerika was the 8th track on Liberation Day. The first half of the song talks about the how US political dissidents quickly become US held political prisoners. The history of the Black Panther Party, the Weather Underground, the Black Liberation Army, the American indian Movement, the FALN and many many others can attest to this dynamic of dissident to political prisoner.

Soldiers sectioned off the street while I was sleeping
something ‘bout the company that I was keeping
crashing throughout the bedroom door one early morning
mashing me onto the floor without a warning
sons of bitches wanted I to give ‘em an answer
meddlers were to my surprise government gangsters
didn’t they know that I was sleeping?

Barrio in barricades without a reason
rounded up in midnight raids and shot for treason
mothers, daughters, fathers, sons placed in detention
bullets beating torture guns to cruel to mention

Sons of bitches wanted I
to tell them my mission
jury declared that I should die
for sedition
didn’t they know that I was just sleeping

The second part of the song is a call and response for Latin American nations to awaken. The call and response comes from Africa and has been incorporated into Puerto Rican music. Breakfast In Amerika is a essentially a Salsa with distorted guitars. Joseph Rodriguez and Arturo Rodriguez talk about the ideas they were trying to incorporate in Breakfast In Amerika in the video below. Following the interview i did with them is scene from MACHETERO that incorporated Breakfast In Amerika. The scene is of one of the lead characters Pedro Taino (played by Not4Prophet lead singer of RICANSTRUCTION and author of the lyrics to Breakfast In Amerika) getting arrested in the small hours of the morning. The song was a kind of ode on a certain level to political prisoners and the scene in MACHETERO is a reflection of that...

j vimeo.com/63324584

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