A film by Mylène Moreno
2015, 90 minutes
No. 011


Hispanic immigrants have made profound contributions to American life in many unique and important ways. Too often though, our society either overlooks it or chooses to ignore. A timely and essential documentary, On Two Fronts chronicles one such contribution – the rich history of Latino service in the military, specifically during the Vietnam War.

Framing the documentary are memoirs of two siblings, Everett and Delia Alvarez, who stood on opposite sides of the Vietnam War, one as a POW and the other protesting at home. Other stories deepen the narrative: in Greenlee County, Arizona, miners’ children fought and died for their country in devastating proportions. Sisters and mothers took notice and action. A farmworker’s son translated his military experience into a career before resigning in protest from his post on a local draft board.

On Two Fronts raises issues that remain relevant today. In communities where there were few alternatives to service, war impacted every household — especially amongst Latinos. How did this affect the young men who served on the front lines? How did it impact their communities? During the Vietnam War Latinos began asking for the first time, What is the true cost of war and the appropriate price of citizenship?

Filmed on location throughout the Southwest and in Vietnam, On Two Fronts combines lush photography with home movies, vivid news footage, and a trove of personal photographs.

"A genuine gift... does a marvelous job of presenting an era in American history that's not commonly understood. In a perfect world, all Americans would have this film — plus documentaries on the Vietnam experiences of African-Americans, women, Asian-Americans and poor whites — presented as required viewing in order to flesh out their knowledge and understanding of a crucial chapter in America’s story." – Washington Post