Sixth annual media that matters film festival: Poet Miguel Diaz transforms poverty into cultivation in the middle of a Los Angeles street.
Recycle is a portrait of a day in the life of Miguel Diaz in the hilly Los Angeles neighborhood of Echo Park. Miguel is a homeless man who is a native of Baja, California, but left a few years back when he broke up with his wife, leaving his daughter behind, the queen of his heart. He currently makes a living by recycling materials in the Echo Park area. During the film he was living inside a van, but currently it is not known where he spends his nights.
Along with his job as a recycler he is also a gardener who made a community garden for his fellow homeless friends who come in the early afternoon to swap their shopping carts’ worth of recyclable materials for a few bucks. He is recovering from substance abuse through his philosophy of recycling life. Diaz uses all the thrown away items that he collects to make a community garden in the median of his street, while offering his insights on survival and nature.
Vasco Lucas Nunes and Ondi Timoner co-directed the film. Nunes rendered images on 35 mm while Timoner recorded the voice and singing of Miguel Diaz for the six-minute documentary during three days of shooting.