In 1973, the United States colluded with right-wing forces in Chile to bring down the democratically elected government of Salvador Allende and usher in the brutally repressive regime of Augusto Pinochet. Finally released in the U.S. in March, Machuca is a Chilean film that brings that now-ancient history to life in the stories of two young boys—one middle class, one poor—who bear witness to the upheavals that sweep through their parochial school and through their city, Santiago. Some of the relationships in the story are a bit hard to follow, but once the narrative is in motion, it is extraordinarily complex and compelling, forcing the viewer to think deeply about issues of class, friendship, repression and social change. The film never preaches and never lets the viewer off with easy and reassuring good guy/bad guy platitudes. For American viewers willing to give thought to the consequences of actions taken by our own government, the film serves as a reminder that our nation has not always lived up to its creed, and that when we meddle in the affairs of other nations, the consequences can be horrendous.