Tepito: El Pequeño Templo (documentary with English subtitles)


Uploaded by creativeblendstv on 31.05.2011

Transcript:
TEPITO: Mythic and sacred place, deep in the heart...
...of the old Tenochtitlan (today Mexico City),...
...where the essence of Mexican people is reflected.
- Expression that means blow a whistle in case the police comes around (te pito).
- Name that arises from the old term Tepache (delicious fermented drink)...
...and "pito" (whistle or ocarina, if you blow it, it sounds better).
TEPITO: THE LITTLE TEMPLE
My father came from the country, from Guadalajara, Jalisco.
He came to Mexico City, looking for adventure with a bunch of friends.
His friends went back, but he stayed here.
When he ran out of cash, he had to work...
...and while walking down the street, the only thing he found...
...was the shoe business.
He started as a gopher, an assistant, an apprentice and so then he met my mom,...
...and then they started having kids. There are a lot of us, 6 boys and 2 girls,...
...and we were involved in the trade since we were little;...
...that s the way I learned.
So that's the way the shoemaking business was born in Tepito, our neighbourhood.
Other trades developed in the same way as the shoe making,...
...people became carpenters...
...and other folks from the country became textile makers.
In that street over there, where the carpenters were,...
...a couple of years ago, a few blocks over, there were people...
...who used to weave bedspreads, blankets and cloth.
Other guys used to sell birds on the carpenters street.
And everybody made something and had a trade.
And because you learned it when you were a kid, you love it,...
...you care about the work and you try to preserve it.
Because we know that keeping our trade...
...preserves our identity, and we keep our neighborhood stay alive.
Hey master, take a look!
Yes, now you need to do the heel, the shape of the shoe here.
You re doing fine, just do it.
Give me that. Look, watch how,...
...like this!
From here to here.
- From here to here? - Right!
But give it form!
TEPITEÑO: Native or inhabitant from Tepito,...
...who is raised in the skill of being stubborn and valiant.
Once it used to have a bad connotation; today it s synonym of cool, mate or bro.
Look, only old books, most of them bought at the Lagunilla market and in Tepito.
A bunch of stuff,...
...all kinds of paintings, from landscapes to mural sketches,...
...even some ideas I have over there.
- Daniel Manrique, painter. -
I rescued this and I m going to fix it up.
It's from I didn t put the date, but it s from 1962.
Here s my existential anguish,...
...the insecurity.
Here I m seeing myself at the point of death...
...and I m trying to make sense of my life,...
...in a surrealist, symbolic way.
I don t know!
ARTIST: Creative person who is trying to leave the hole,...
...paying attention to his environment, and is starving anyway (mostly in Tepito).
To me, culture is the capacity to work,...
...more specifically, to work with your hands,...
...and that's one of the things that I d emphasize when considering Tepito s strengths.
That's what we have here...
...the ability to craft,...
...to be artisans,...
...the ability to reinvent the trades...
...that came from Europe 500 years ago.
In Tepito, things are reinvented,...
...and that ability comes from necessity,...
...the necessity to work, the need to live.
My first years dedicated to painting were...
...really dramatic.
Twice I almost died of starvation.
I reached a point where I didn't eat and I didn t even move,...
...just sipping water.
But then I was rescued by my mother and sister.
They came over to my one-room place in the slums...
...and there I was...
...laying,...
...without moving.
They took me to the doctor and he said: what this boy needs is to eat.
So it was pure luck that I was saved!
You know what? We re going to work on that,...
...we re going to work...
...we re going to work with the heavy, the jab and the uppercut,...
...but as a combination.
When you take one hand away, you have the other already there, and then the other,...
...so that you don t do like this, then this, then this...
...because when you re boxing, you never go like this...
...you guys are doing fine,...
...but the movement is subconscious,...
...the fakes, everything.
My dad had a sign shop and he used to send me to buy paint.
Once when I was 11 years old,...
...I went to buy some paint.
I saw a little crowd, people were gathered,...
...looking inside a government railroad building.
Inside, two guys were boxing. They were in a ring, throwing blows,...
...with ear pads and all kinds of equipment, like at a boxing gym.
It caught my attention and it really grabbed me.
I was a kid and really skinny,...
...so I went in,...
...squeezing through the bars in front.
That was in 1956,...
...and I never got out.
BOXER: The one who fights in the ring. Gentle trade that emerged from street fighting,...
...reaching nobility and tradition in the neighborhood of Tepito.
...Octavio The Famous Gómez!
When I became a professional boxer,...
...I started winning fights because I already had experience...
...and I started earning money, everything.
Then I got into the Golden Gloves tournament...
...and I became champion of the Golden Gloves , then champion of Mexico City.
I went to fight, representing Mexico City, to national tournaments,...
...in Ciudad Juárez, Mexicali, Tijuana, Monterrey, all over the place.
And I kept winning and winning.
Back in the 70's, all the youngsters wanted to make it,...
...they wanted to be rich,...
...and the means that they had at hand was to become boxers,...
...that was how they could make it big, become superstars.
And a lot of them made it, they came out of nowhere...
...and reached the top, where the stars are.
Some hit bottom, not all, but some...
...and they were the only ones who lost out,...
...because their families were still involved in the work.
Only the losers were there, some sort of crazy,...
...telling stories of their adventures, what they used to have...
...and who they used to be.
But their families were still committed to the work, getting ahead.
When the black market started, it wasn't like that anymore.
Once there was the contraband business, nobody wanted to be a boxer anymore,...
...because it wasn't easy, that shit was hard, you know?
So they looked for another way to make money: smuggling!
And the same thing happened, they reached the top,...
...had the money that they wanted, but then, they fell.
And when they fell, they not only screwed themselves, but their whole families as well.