El Contrato

El Contrato

| 51 min

This documentary from Min Sook Lee (Tiger Spirit) follows a poverty-stricken father from Central Mexico, along with several of his countrymen, as they make their annual migration to southern Ontario to pick tomatoes. For 8 months a year, the town's population absorbs 4,000 migrant workers who toil under conditions, and for wages, that no local would accept. Yet despite a fear of repercussions, the workers voice their desire for dignity and respect.

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Credits
  • writer
    Min Sook Lee
  • director
    Min Sook Lee
  • producer
    Karen King-Chigbo
  • editor
    Katharine Asals
  • director of photography
    John Westheuser
    David Patrick
  • sound recordist
    Sanjay Mehta
  • original music composer
    Edgardo Moreno
  • narration writer
    Bill Cameron
  • narrator
    Maria del Mar
  • research
    Elizabeth Klinck
    Tonya Reid
    Min Sook Lee
  • production manager
    Sarah Zammit
    Norah Wakula
    Douglas MacFarlane
  • production coordinator
    Penny Kennedy
  • additional camera
    Ali Kazimi
    Min Sook Lee
  • additional sound recordist
    Don Grundsten
    Mike Borlace
    Benito Amaro
  • sound edit
    Sound Healer Inc.
  • dialogue editor
    Marvyn Dennis
  • sound supervision
    Marvyn Dennis
  • sound fx editor
    Steven Toepell
  • sound design
    Steven Toepell
  • online editor
    Dan Johnston
  • colourist
    Debbie Gaysinsky
  • re-recording mixer
    Lou Solakofski
    Martin Lee
  • re-recording assistant
    Stacy Coutts
  • foley recording
    John Bracco
  • foley artist
    Virginia Storey
  • narration recording
    Darcy Kite
  • music performer
    Edgardo Moreno
  • interpreter
    Evelyn Encalada Grez
    Ana Cabrera
    Nicole Noel
    Laura Gorham
  • translation
    Enzo Moreno
    Alejandro Ronceria
    Jessica Farias
  • subtitle translation
    Beatriz Pizano
  • transcription
    Andrea Feder
    Sheila Gruner
    Maurice C. Behaine
    Orestes Robledo
    Pat Kerr
    Jeannethe Lara
    Jessica Farias
  • production supervisor
    Kemp Archibald
  • assistant production supervisor
    Mark Wilson
  • unit administrator
    Ida Di Fruscia
  • unit manager
    Grazia Rade
  • assistant unit administrator
    Joanne Forrest
  • production administrative assistant
    Nadine Simunic
    Lea Marin-Jara
  • product manager
    Sue Mander
  • digital editing technician
    Douglas Crawford
  • editing assistant
    Catherine Scott
  • senior producer
    Silva Basmajian
  • executive producer
    Sylvia Sweeney
    Louise Lore

  • None

    15:10 Boom. "Call their owners" And this lady pulls back the curtain.

    None, 4 Jun 2020
  • pauluz40

    okey carlos es lamentable esa situación pero la mayoría de la culpa es de ustedes por dejarse explotar!!! y por estar pensando ue la solución de los problemas de mexico es el exterior!! haber si cambian esa mentalidad y luchan en su propio país en contra de esos gobiernos corruptos!! y ustedes mismo trabajan en beneficio de su propio pais!

    pauluz40, 30 Nov 2013
  • guanacobz

    In Response to Farmer 101- First and most, you must realize that you are missing the point of the issue. The issue at hand is that workers are simply being exploited. Also, it needs to be point out that there are also many good employers out there that really values these workers with dignity. Furthermore, this kind of situation it's not only happening in Leamington but in all Canada. The fact is that historically Canada has been exporting cheap labour for a long time. In theory Globalization should work for all, but in fact the only one that is getting rich is the rich. In Mexico for instance, Canadian companies are opening over there for the cheap labour. In Guatemala, the mining industry simply walks in 1000's year old villages and displaced them so they can mine their land, and who do you think is profitting? You mentioned that the standard of living in Canada is higher than Mexico and it's not our fault? I challenge you to find out why? As a consumer it is our fault, I bet your children have the latest technology in video games, made in china of course. Do you know how much that cost to make and who is make in it? How about the very cup of coffee you drink every morning, do you know if is fair trade or if it was picked by children in Colombia or Brazil? How about the chocolate you buy in Valentines or Halloween made by Nestle, the one company that uses child traffickers to labour their coco factories in the Ivory Coast? ...get educated first before you go blaming others, and the fact is that it is modern day slavery in Canada, still happening and will continue to happen until this government changes.

    guanacobz, 13 Nov 2011
  • farmer101

    I am a greenhouse farmer in Leamington, what most of you posting negative comments don’t realize is that these are just a hand full of bad, if not very bad cases of the owners and supervisor’s not paying attention or caring for their workers rights and their obligations as owners/managers to treat them as equals… Yes there are other cases of supervisors or owners treating there workers poorly in Leamington not just in the greenhouse sector. This may surprise you but owners of other companies from food processing to clothing stores / from coffee shops to restaurants that also have treated workers unfairly or poorly too… If there are companies to be ran, there will always be a few bad or cruel bosses out there. If I were given the opportunity to make as much as 10 times what the average person in my county, province or country makes in a year by going to work in a better standard of living country than Canada for eight months out of the year I would.. To return home with the equivalent of $200,000 or $300,000 in my pocket, I would… With a higher standard of living with better medical attention and better.. Well let’s face it.. Canada’s standard of living is much higher than Mexico.. This is not our fault or there’s.. It’s just a fact of life...

    farmer101, 9 Nov 2011
  • drcassiel

    Incredible! How Canda permit this kind of acts, not even in US we give this kind of trade to mexicans. The issue here its the mexican authorities, how much money they got from this business? They not even care the way this people live and how often their rights are violated. Extremely bad the attitude from the mexican representation in Canada. At the end no one cares, like the farmers said, are only salves less than animals.

    drcassiel, 22 Aug 2011
  • mercedesbe

    I would like to know, as now April 18, 2011, what is happening with the mexican workers that came to the canadian farms as a seasonal workers?. As a canadian citizen I am ashamed of that kind of new slavery that is exposed in the film "El Contrato". we live in a country where human rights are suposed to be protected and demanded in all areas of our lives, such as work, schools, churchs, etc. Now I am asking where is the Ministry of labour in all of these?, why is not looking after the rights of these workers?, Where are the autorities of Leamington?, are they blind to see the abuse, what is going on and how we can help to change this shameful situation

    mercedesbe, 19 Apr 2011
  • spartina

    Pretty shocking actually... I certainly hope this film has since helped make a difference with regards to how migrant workers are treated on farms in Canada and that labor laws now take them into account... To see them crammed into such close quarters and faced with no or little resort when facing unfair working conditions and abusive employers is disheartening.

    spartina, 14 Oct 2010
  • alcon

    Dreams shattered by globalization and free trade agreetments that bring wealth only to the few and "chosen ones"...

    alcon, 6 Jul 2010
  • shortkutca

    Not a shocker how the government works outside from mexico just to sell it's people for a big chunk of the profits from their hard work.

    shortkutca, 3 Jun 2010