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Documentary, Social Issue, Labor

Building the American Dream

In Texas, construction workers face the deadliest conditions in the country. Building the American Dream follows three immigrant families who are rising up to seek justice and equality in an industry rife with exploitation.


Film Details


Across Texas an unstoppable construction boom drives urban sprawl and luxury high-rises. Its dirty secret: abuse of immigrant labor. BUILDING THE AMERICAN DREAM captures a turning point as a movement forms to fight widespread construction industry injustices. Grieving their son, a Mexican family campaigns for a life-and-death safety ordinance. A Salvadorian electrician couple owed thousands in back pay fights for their children’s future. A bereaved son battles to protect others from his family's preventable tragedy. A story of courage, resilience and community, the film reveals shocking truths about the hardworking immigrants who build the American Dream, of which they are excluded.

  • Director Chelsea Hernandez
  • Producers Chelsea Hernandez, Marisol Medrano
  • Featuring Claudia, Alex, Gustavo, Jasmine Granillo, Christian
  • Runtime 73mins
  • Country USA

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Other Texas Feature Competition Films