Reviews & Quotes

Video Librarian
"The film is heartening in that it shows us how some people will fight back, including at least a few of the undocumented, who have reason to worry about speaking up. At the same time, we know that every ounce of progress made toward laborer protections is far outweighed by the unscrupulous. Building the American Dream will make a viewer angry, but let in a little daylight, too. Strongly recommended."

Educational Media Reviews Online | Michael Pasqualoni, Librarian for Public Communications, Syracuse University Libraries
"A moving portrait of dangerous labor conditions within the Texas construction trades ... Building the American Dream is recommended viewing for those interested in labor studies, immigration, community organizing, Texas politics, or the sociology of the workplace."

Roger Ebert 
“The hard-hitting documentary examines the recent boom in Texas’ economy and the toll it’s taken immigrant laborers.”

The Hollywood Reporter 
“An eye-opener about the abuse of workers whose immigration status makes them victims.”

Film Threat
“This film opens your eyes even more to exactly how unfair this country is to undocumented immigrants, particularly those of Latinx origins. Chelsea Hernandez tugs at our heartstrings and puts fuel to a fire of righteous anger.”

Texas Observer
“A striking mix of intimate drama and something approaching a how-to guide for community organizers…”

The Austin Chronicle
“The film explores the dual threats of wage theft and personal injury with a determination that doesn’t shy away from the political. Hernandez brings us into City Council meetings and charts the Trump administration’s plans to end DACA. While these issues often get elevated and then abstracted in media, Hernandez instead allows the families to lead the tone of the documentary.”

Austin360
‘‘BUILDING THE AMERICAN DREAM reveals dark side of ‘Texas Miracle’’