• Jeth Weinrich



This is the first installment in a three part strategy who´s aim is to break the world record for money raised on Kickstarter. Big goals, big dreams, big price we have paid.

Jonathon Hernandez was snuck into America on a flight with his aunt using his cousins passport because they were the same age and looked the same He was barely five. They landed officially in Comptons where Johnny spent his most formative years, and years that in that neighborhood you could not escape the gang influence on your kids. Johnny was no exception.

So his mom moved him to Salt Lake City when he was hardly 12, where Johnny became a celebrity because he was the kid from Compton, he was for real straight outa Compton. By the time he was seventeen he was one of the top dealers in Salt Lake City selling heroin mostly. He drove a 50,000 dollar car, he had nice clothes. People looked up to him.

But one day it all came crashing down around him surrounded by Salt Lake City Police on a rainy night and in the months that followed at his sentencing the judge looked at Johnny and said, I think you are good kid, you just got yourself mixed up in stuff you should never have. You are about to face a sentence of 75 years in prison. But it has been brought to my attention that you are here in the US illegally. So I can also just deport you back to Mexico.

´but I don´t know anything about Mexico´. Johnny said. ´Well, said the judge, you will have plenty of time to learn´.

Jonathon couldn´t speak spanish but he understood it because him and his mother, who refused to speak english only spoke spanish to Johnny, and Johnny just as stubborn spoke english back. That is what made Johnny the most bad ass interpreter that I ever met. That´s what his first job was for me at Cinema Cartel. But it was pretty evident almost right away when I showed him how to edit that he was a rare talent too.

I never saw anyone in my whole career pick up the mind set to be an editor, conquer the technology, and run with it like Jonathon Hernandez and as fast as he did. He was like one of those kids who could play Mozart on the piano at age five. That´s how good he was. But I could never compete with his love story with the mafia. Somewhere somehow, from way back, it was like in his blood.

So there were plenty times he had to ´skip´ work for me because his ´boss´ had a job for him. ´I thought I was your boss´. ´Ya but, no, I mean the real boss´. In a way even me, if the real boss came to me and said, hey gringo, you think you could help me with something, I´d be scrambling for a reason why I couldn´t, and in truth, the mafia here is not like the mafia on tv, or like the Gambino family, or whatever we learned watching The Godfather. It´s not really like the mafia, it´s the Cartel, and the business model, purely as a business model, is pretty much genius, or half because the other half is how they pull it off. I don´t judge because I´ve seen the mafia here do things that helped more people, normal good people not involved in Narco business, people in the barrios here, Ive seen them step up and defend those people.

I digress. So, it was Johnny who came and said ´ I have a cool project idea for you´ and then he explained he was involved with a Transgender girl named Mylie Garcia. I had seen Mylie around and almost a year earlier heard her speaking english and asked about her story. I said to her then that I hoped someday I could maybe shoot an interview with her. But time and a hundred storms of other things and I never got around to that.

´don´t ask, I can´t explain it but I think there´s a movie idea here´. Is how Johnny tried to explain it, how he, who always seemed like a ladies man was now in a relationship with a Transgender girl named Mylie.

Even as I read what I just wrote it seems like it´s a no brainer for a movie idea. And it is.

The dream though, was that in time Johnny would direct the movie, because he had the talent. I would be the coach and help these kids get to where they could tell their story in a film creative adventure. . Then the lock down and I was left stranded in Mexico, unable to get back to Canada and with all that transpired next, no real way or reason to run back to L.A.. I barely survived the ordeals, one that almost had me murdered one night by a young girl from Acapulco with a switch blade that did not spring open as planned, a miracle, as she jammed the handle of the knife into my collarbone. She was aiming for my throat.

I tried to get the police to take her away but they were more interested in stealing the money I had she told them was likely in my front shirt pocket, having followed me to the Moneygram office. Had they arrested her, an older lady, an american, who loved baking things for the neighborhood, would still be alive. Because four nights later they broke in her house and robbed and murdered her.

I have so many stories, even one with Johnny and i coming to the aid of a man who had just been stabbed with an ice pick. We actually held the guy who did the stabbing until the police came. risked our lives while thirty other Mexicans just crowded around and watched.

This was life during the pandemic when every hotel was shut down and people got desperate. Then the BLM riots, and the melt down of an election, there was just nowhere to land our project to raise money. And when the dust settled enough to go for it, Jonathon, just not doing what he

should have been, and when you work for the Cartel, there rules are strict, and December 13th, 2020 he was shot out in the desert near Todos Santos for being stupid.

It was like the air got sucked right out of the sky and the percussive wompf of the moment you could feel right in the center of your chest. And it pulled the floor out from under us. So for many months we did nothing. Then another wompf which took out what was left of whatever it was still beating in my chest, my australian cattle dog, Jackson, perhaps the most famous dog in Cabo, and my compadre for eleven years died suddenly.

Why or how I found a reason to keep going, or Mylie, or the other people who are part of this did, maybe its evidence of God. Because I remember Johnny telling me one day, that he couldn´t explain it but, ever since he was a kid he felt like he was destined for something great, just knew it in his heart that he would be apart of doing something great.

Jonathon Hernandez left a six year old son behind, and a story to be told, and maybe if we succeed it will be proof that he was right. Amen

16 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All