Bless Me Ultima: Book Vs. Movie

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Bless me ultima is a story about a young boy named Antonio and his family. The setting of the book and the movie takes place in a small town in Guadalupe, New Mexico in the 1940s. The story begins with Ultima, a healer, moving into the Marez Family house. As the story continues Antonio, who is seven at the time beings to witness horrific life events. Which eventually leads him to lose his innocence. Throughout the story, we witness Antonio’s family argue about Antonio’s future which puts a lot of pressure onto him. Eventually, Ultima convinces him to decide his own future for himself. Bless me Ultima’s book and movie are pretty much the same except for some key details.

One detail that was left out of the movie was the story of the golden carp. According to Samuel, there was an ancient civilization a long time ago. In this land, there were people who were very blessed with fruitful land but one day there was a drought and in order to survive they had to eat from the forbidden carp. The gods were very furious and wanted to punish them all by killing them but of course, the nice god reasoned with them in his own way. The nice god reasoned with them and convince them to turn them all into a carp. Once the gods turned them all into carp, they turned the nice god into the golden carp who lead and ruled over the carp people.

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Another key detail that was left out of the movie was the curse on the Tellez farm. In the book, the Tellez family knew that they were cursed because their dishes and utensils will crash together and fall to the ground. Stones would even fall from the sky. According to Ultima, the cause of the curse on the family was the spirit of three native men who hadn’t been buried properly years ago. The men had been controlled and tortured by witches who had committed many misdeeds. Ultima removed the cursed by telling Gabriel and Tellez to build a funeral platform. When they were done she placed bundles and had them and set them on fire. Once they were all burned down she said that the curse is gone.

Another detail that was left out of the movie was the development of Narciso’s character. Narciso was a man who had a wife but she had died at an early age. In chapter 11, Antonio discovers that Narciso had a garden and he would plant his plants by the moon. Antonio also discovered that Narciso would stay drunk all through the spring. Although, Narciso was mentioned in the movie those aspects of him didn’t show. Some similarities that the book and the movie both showed were that as Antonio was walking home from school he saw that Tenorio and Narciso fighting outside of the bar. After the fight, Narciso went to Rosie’s house to get help from Andrew but Andrew did not want to take him seriously and refused to go with him to warn Ultima because of how drunk Narciso was. Once Andrew refuses to help, Narciso went to the Marez family’s house to warn Ultima that Tenorio was going to try to kill her again. A Narciso so was going to the house to warn Ultima Antonio witnesses fight at the Juniper tree, he saw Tenorio shoot and kill Narciso.

Lastly, the movie seems to skip the part of the dream scene of Antonio’s birth. This part was very important because it symbolized the differences between the Marez and the Luna ways. This part of the story showed the beliefs of the Marez side of the family. The Marez side of the family is full of vaqueros, which was what Antonio’s dad wanted him to be. This also showed the beliefs of the Luna side of the family. The Luna side of the family was filled with farmers but the mother wanted her son to be a priest or a farmer.

Although the book and the movie were really good I personally prefer the movie over the book because although had less detail in it, it’s still fulfilled its purpose. I think some pros of reading the book first was knowing what the author was truly trying to say in his writing before I watch the movie. One con of reading the book before the movie was that I knew exactly what was going to happen next. I believe that reading the book before the movie was different because by reading first we actually understand more than we would by just watching the movie. If I didn’t read the book before I watch the movie I believe that I would have been confused in some parts and not understand what was going on. All in all, I believe that the book and the movie are pretty much the same. 


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