• Still from Beyond The Border

    Still from Beyond The Border


The Film

Over the past decade, thousands of Latinos seeking a better life have migrated to Kentucky, finding low-paying jobs in the tobacco, manufacturing, and horse racing industries. However, as these Latino communities have swelled, so too has the xenophobia and discrimination they face.

Beyond the Border - Más Allá de la Frontera traces the painful transition made by four sons in a Mexican family as they leave behind their parents and sisters and struggle to overcome cultural, class and language barriers in Kentucky.

By following the Ayala brothers as they leave their home in Michoacan, Mexico, and relocate to the Bluegrass Region, the story explores a range of complexities surrounding the immigration experience, including responsibility to family, community and culture. The documentary traces each man's individual and collective journey. Initially, the film focuses on the two younger brothers, Marcelo and Horacio, and their adjustment to living in Kentucky. The second part focuses on Gonzalo, the eldest, who has had what he calls "a very hard life" and whose sense of self-worth has been strained by alcoholism. The documentary is rounded out by Juan, who left at age14 in order to support his parents and younger brothers and sisters, and now has his own children.

Avoiding pathos and victimization, Beyond the Border - Más Allá de la Frontera humanizes the immigrant experience. The way the U.S.-Mexico border is policed and the effects of economic and racial discrimination on Mexican immigrants are other themes explored in the program.

The Filmmakers

  1. Eren Isabel McGinnisProducer
  2. Ari Luis PalosProducer