Will the border wall strike a fatal blow to one of richest natural and cultural regions in North America?
Ay Mariposa tells a story of La Mariposa, Zulema, and Marianna–three characters in the Lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas whose lives are upended by plans to build a US-Mexico border wall. As the director of the National Butterfly Center, Marianna Trevino Wright has become a leader of wall resistance in the Valley, a position that has resulted in violent threats from pro-wall factions and an emotional odyssey as she tries to navigate the ever-shifting sands of border policy. Zulema Hernandez, a life-long migrant worker, immigrant and great grandmother, has been a dedicated advocate for all migrants, both wild and human-kind. Meanwhile the butterfly, La Mariposa, fights its own daily battle for survival in a landscape where more than 95 percent of its habitat is long gone and much of what remains lies directly in the path of the wall.
The film draws a portrait of Zulema, la Mariposa, and Marianna’s lives and conveys their struggles in the lengthening shadow of a border wall, delving into the motivations that underlie their opposition and actions, and the surprising ties that bind them all together.
BACKGROUND Nearly 700 miles of wall and other border barriers were constructed under the administrations of George W. Bush and Barack Obama. The completion of the border wall under the Trump administration would seal the fate of some of the most endangered animals in North America, and fundamentally alter national parks, wilderness, wildlife refuges and the existence of every borderlands resident.
This film tells a microcosmic tale of all that is being lost in the rush to build border barriers along the 2,000-mile meeting place of the United States and Mexico.
Run time: 57 minutes
Completion date: April 1, 2019
Language: English and Spanish