Tent City, by Aldo Velasco, depicts a near future that many could foresee today. In the wake of an economic collapse, people are constantly being foreclosed upon, forced to move out of their comfortable houses, and into a community field of tents, known to bank enforcers as Tent City.
One of those enforcers is our main character. Matthew Ochoa. After the economic collapse, he had to turn to the bank for work, becoming one of those very enforcers. This causes large amounts of stress within himself and his family, as they do not approve of the work he does.
His son is especially guilty of this, but allows his father to tell him a story, interweaving Matthews fate with the fate of his fictional character. He hopes to explain to his child that while he doesn’t agree with the work he is doing; he has no choice.
Despite this, Matthew’s son prompts him with the question, ‘why not?’ In the wake of this, Matthew quits, loses his job, and soon meets the fate that he himself had bestowed upon so many others.
It is a story of self-sacrifice and doing what needs to be done, of course, but the major aspect of the film is to show that people must stand up for their beliefs despite the consequences that may come. It is Matthew’s son that shows him that living a life he hates may leave him worse off than Tent City itself.