Cibolero

Kermit Lopez

Book Cover

GENRE

ACTION ADVENTURE HISTORICAL FICTION OTHER DRAMA

    Core Theme

    GOOD VS. EVIL

    TIME PERIOD

    19th Century

    COMPARABLE TITLES

    THE MISSING (2003)

    CHARACTER LIST

    ANTONIO (20-50) LEAD. COURAGEOUS, GOOD-HEARTED, AND GOOD HUNTER

    MARIA (20-50) WIFE & SUPPORTING CHARACTER

    ELENA (20) DAUGHTER & SUPPORTING CHARACTER

    J.D CALHOUN (30S) ANTAGONIST, TEXAN RANGER, MEAN

    RUSSEL (30S) ANTAGONIST, TEXAN RANGER, GOOD-HEARTED

    MATEO (12) SON AND COURAGEOUS

    Logline

    Hispanic buffalo hunter in 19th century New Mexico attempts to track and rescue his kidnapped daughter from a renegade band of 'Rangers' from Texas who have ravaged his family.

    Target Audiences

    Age: 18-34,35-54,55+

    Target Gender: Universal

    Setting

    New Mexico and Texas

    Based on a True Story

    No

    Publishing Details

    Status: Yes: self-published

    Publisher: iUniverse

    Year Published: 2007

    Starting Description

    A somewhat renegade band of Texas Rangers enters New Mexico territory while seeking to capture a runaway slave. During an encounter with Antonio Baca, they attack his family and kidnap his daughter.

    Ending Description

    Ultimately, Antonio will face her captors and come to terms with the sweeping changes, racism and violent conflict brought about by the land changing rule from New Spain to Mexico and finally to the forced annexation by the U.S.

    Group Specific

    Latino/Hispanic and those with interst in the 'old west'

    Hard Copy Available

    Yes

    ISBN

    059543567X

    Mature Audience Themes

    Language/Profanity

    Plot - Other Elements

    Other

    Plot - Premise

    Overcoming Monster/Villain,Quest,Voyage and Return,Other

    Main Character Details

    Name: Antonio Baca

    Age: 45

    Gender: Male

    Role: Protagonist

    Key Traits: Heroic,Underdog,Honorable,Modest,Masculine

    Additional Character Details

    Name: Elena Baca

    Age: 16

    Gender: Female

    Role: Protagonist

    Key Traits: Empathetic,Underdog,Aspiring,Honorable

    Additional Character Details

    The author has not yet written this

    Additional Character Details

    The author has not yet written this

    Development Pitch

    Cibolero is a Western film set in historical New Mexico in the period immediately following the Civil War. New Mexico was not yet a state. The area was populated with Indians and New Mexicans native to the region, and the white settlers were slowly encroaching from the east. It was a time of tension and strife. A somewhat renegade band of Texas Rangers enters New Mexico territory from the east while seeking to capture a runaway slave who has reportedly had an affair with a white woman, clearly ahanging offense in Texas. The plot unfolds as this particular gang of thugs meets Antonio Baca, a farmer and retired Cibolero (buffalo hunter). He must now hunt the Texans who have ravaged his family and kidnapped his daughter.

    Genre

    DRAMA, RELIGION, ACTION, WAR

    Brief

    When Antonio's Baca quiet life is interrupted by American Rangers kidnapping his daughter, he goes after the rangers to rescue her. As he ventures into the Llano desert, he remembers the many people he lost in his life due to the war between Mexicans, Indians, and Americans. Antonio saves Elena and they ride back to their lands.

    Overall Rating

    GOOD

    Point of View

    THIRD PERSON

    Narrative Elements

    Authors Writing Style: EXCELLENT

    Characterization: EXCELLENT

    Commerciality: GOOD

    Franchise Potential: FAIR

    Pace: EXCELLENT

    Premise: GOOD

    Structure: GOOD

    Theme: EXCELLENT

    Accuracy of Book Profile

    Logline can be improved. Antonio is the only protagonist, but more characters could be added. Elena Baca - Supporting Character J.D Calhoun - Antagonist (30s, Texan ranger, mean) Russell - Supporting (30s, Texan Ranger, good-hearted)

    Draw of Story

    The history of the forced annexation of New Mexico to the United States' territory.

    Possible Drawbacks

    It was too much in the past. I believe there could be a better balance between the present-day pursuit, the development of Elena's character, and Antonio's memories of the civil war.

    Use of Special Effects

    THE STORY DOES NOT RELY ON SPECIAL EFFECTS

    Primary Hook of Story

    The New Mexican's point of view of the civil war, a slice of history that is very much unexplored in the big media.

    Fanbase Potential

    Not this type of story.

    Awards Potential

    It has the potential for stunning visuals, intense performances, and creative costume design.

    Envisioned Budget

    LARGE BUDGET

    Similar Films/TV Series

    APPALOOSA, THE BALLAD OF BUSTER SCRUGGS

    What’s New About the Story

    The setting and perspective. It could be more unique if the female character (Elena) was better developed.

    Lead Characters

    Antonio is very courageous and stands up for his family and people.

    Uniqueness of Story

    The story itself is very interesting. Unfortunately, the genre does not appeal to all audiences.

    Possible Formats

    Film - Indie, Film - Streaming, Film - Studio, TV Series - Limited Run / Mini-Series

    Analyst Recommendation

    RECOMMEND

    Justification

    It's a unique and very well-written story. There aren't a lot of western scripts in the marketplace, so this could stand out.

    Brief

    When Antonio Baca's daughter is kidnapped from his ranch in New Mexico by Texan rangers, the former buffalo hunter goes on a pursuit to save his daughter. On his way through the llano desert, he remembers his days fighting against confederate soldiers in the civil war.

    What We Liked

    - The point of view in this setting is unique;
    - It's historical fiction about the forced annexation of New Mexico by the U.S;
    - The protagonist remains good-hearted even after a life story of suffering by Americans;
    - Happy ending.

    Film: Set in the deserts of New Mexico, this historical fiction is an excellent base for a visually stunning piece. The story is set in multiple periods and follows Antonio's life of struggle against Americans since the forced annexation of New Mexico by the U.S., creating an appealing western narrative to audiences that rarely have the opportunity to enjoy this genre. The cultural background of 19th-century living allows the infinite exploration of costume design, set design, and overall production design that can contribute to creating a faithful and memorable visual representation of the time.

    TV: Cibolero is a great piece for a mini-series. The background is the American civil war, but from the point of view still unexplored. The history of the forced annexation of New Mexico by the U.S provides vast content for this historical fiction to go on for several episodes. With the kidnapping of Elena, this present-day plot can broaden the audience to people who are not always very interested in westerns. If the long journey is spread out in multiple episodes, it can allow the further development of many characters, especially Elena and J.D Calhoun.

    Key points: - Historical setting;
    - New POV in the civil war background;
    - Potential for stunning visuals;
    - Good writing style;
    - Story told in multiple periods of time;

    Synopsis

    Antonio Baca is a farmer living in New Mexico. His fieldwork is exhausting, but he enjoys taking care of his land and family with the help of a young American man named Joseph. Antonio’s family also helps; his wife, Maria, works in the house and takes care of their kids Elena, Mateo, Benito, Anita, and Gabriela. There was once a sixth child, but the boy died as an infant. Antonio doesn’t like when Elena and Joseph begin to get friendly, so he keeps them busy with work. Antonio tells his family he needs to go to Las Vegas to buy seeds and farming equipment; Maria is tense, but Antonio guarantees he’ll be back in a day or two. While Antonio is gone, six gringo men, Texas rangers, in horses show up at the farm on their way looking for a man of color. They are all tired and thirsty; one of the men, J.D. Calhoun, sees Maria and Elena and likes how they look. Maria orders her daughter to go inside the house and tells the men to leave. When the men attempt to attack Maria, Mateo shoots at them with a rifle. They shoot back, and Mateo collapses. Maria tries to go to him, but she’s attacked and passes out. J.D. goes after Elena inside the house. His friends try to convince him to give up, but he’s determined. Elena, too, passes out, and J.D. announces he wants to kidnap Elena.

    On his way back from Vegas, after the negotiations go down smoothly, Antonio remembers how his ancestors got to the lands of New Mexico. When he arrives, he discovers what happened to his family. Mateo is still alive but has been shot in the head, and Elena was taken. Antonio blames himself for what happened. Captain Russell is the leader of the six men. They’re looking for a black man accused of raping a rich Texan farmer’s wife but have lost track of him. They believe the woman is lying to cover a voluntary affair, but the rich farmer’s lobby made them go after the man anyway.
    Russell wants to return to Texas and is especially annoyed with Calhoun and his decision to kidnap Elena. He was able to stop the men from raping Elena so far but was worried about how much longer we’d be able to do it for. He thought she was beautiful and strong. At night, Antonio dreams about his grandfather and remembers a story he told about the peace between Tío Ignácio and the Comanches, and how his grandfather’s cousin, Maria, had been kidnapped and spent her life with the Comanches. Antonio gets his old Cibolero lance from the wall, checks on Mateo, and leaves the house after his daughter. Now awake, Elena thinks about attempting to escape the men but knows it’s too risky. Antonio remembers when he was a kid and accompanied his uncle Tomás in hunting buffalos. The uncle taught him how to hunt, looking for signs. He sees markings on the ground and realizes the men are six riders and Elena, on a horse stolen from his farm. Calhoun is upset when Russell questions the reason to have Elena, and he talks about selling her in Dallas. Russell convinces him not to rape her to get good money, and Calhoun questions Russell’s concern for Elena.

    Smith, one of the men in the group, a preacher, talks with Russell about their plan to get back to Texas and Elena; the preacher dislikes Mexicans. Russell tells Smith his plan to keep the men away from Elena to keep her value, but Smith doesn’t think it’s a great idea. Russell thinks about his childhood in Texas; his parents thought differently from the others, they didn’t believe Mexicans to be inferior and thought those values to Russell. He decides to talk to Elena; he admits to speaking a little bit of English but lies about the amount. Russell tells her his plan to save her and get her back to her family; she’s relieved but also a little hopeless. Neither one notices that J.D overhears their conversation. The next day, they follow their way, and J.D. plays nicely to confuse Russell. As he follows the rangers’ tracks, Antonio remembers his hunting days with Tío Tomás and when they had to fight Tejanos, who wanted to invade New Mexico and dominate the land and people of color. Antonio remembers the cruelty of Texans and fears for Elena. He also remembers a day when his childhood friend, Juanito, died while they were hunting buffalos. Antonio visits his good friend Manuel in his way; they remember Manuel’s father, a brave man who would never let the Americans take over their land. Manuel tells Antonio he’s sorry about what happened with Elena and helps him with food and water. Refueled, Antonio goes back to his tracking of the men.

    The rangers run into a wagon, and Calhoun draws his gun. Inside, they find a black man who used to be a slave but is now free. The man begs to be left alone, Russell agrees, but Calhoun shoots the man dead. The difference between Russell and Calhoun is more obvious than ever. Russell uses his authority to force Calhoun to bury the former slave, and Calhoun has no choice but to do it. Antonio remembers when he married Maria, at age 25. He was still following the cibolero way of life. They were immediate attracted to each other and soon got married. In his pursue through the llano valley, Antonio finds the abandoned wagon and sees the fresh grave. He hears a cry and finds three children, two sons and one daughter of the murdered man. Antonio helps the kids get settled and follow their path alone towards the free city, where they can find their uncle. Calhoun and another ranger kill an Indian to steal his supplies; they decide to lie to Russell about what happened. Antonio finds an 11-year-old boy taking care of sheep; he tells Antonio about the gringos who murdered the Indian. Antonio calms down the boy, who’s afraid of both the Indians and the rangers. Antonio goes back to his pursue. He thinks about the past when American soldiers killed his sister-in-law Petra, which led to Mexicans joining the Indians to fight against Americans.

    Russell and the men are lost, and Russell fears they’re being followed. They’re also scared they might die of thirst in the llano desert. Eventually, they notice that Elena was missing. In the past, Antonio convinces Petra’s husband, Felipe, to join the men at meetings about fighting against Americans. The men need to postpone the attack because the Americans find out about their resistance. And then Felipe tries to convince Antonio to leave with Maria to start a new life elsewhere, where it’s safe. He decides to stay with his men and fight. Elena doesn’t know where to hide and hears the men approaching. She tries to escape but is caught by Russell, who doesn’t let her go for her own safety. As Antonio gets closer to the rangers, he sees the Indians who follow them for revenge for their dead Indian friend. Antonio is flooded by memories of all the people he lost for the Americans; he’s determined to save his daughter and happy she is still alive. The rangers notice the Indians following them and attempt to make them lose track. The Mexican resistance loses the war against Americans, and Antonio’s father-in-law and Felipe are killed, together with many other Mexican soldiers. Tired of so many losses, Antonio finally leaves the lands to start a new life with Maria. Antonio has a few years of peace and hopes it lasts his entire life. But one day, three Americans show up and attempt to buy their lands. Antonio dismisses them. Later, the men return with papers and claim that Antonio owes taxes on the property, making them lose the land. The men tell Antonio to leave the land by the next day, but he refuses. Maria convinces him, and they go away. They finally settle in Santa Fé. Calhoun’s dissatisfaction with Captain Russell grows, but the other men convince him not to do anything. And then, one of the rangers is killed and the men argue on what to do. Russell isn’t sure the Indians did it based on the injuries. The men cannot agree on moving forward, and Russell orders them to follow his lead.

    Antonio recalls when General Montoya and his men were able to defeat the Confederate soldiers and keep them out of New Mexico forever. He attempts to rescue Elena at night while the rangers sleep but fails when one of the rangers sees him. Frustrated, he thinks of the times after the war. Apache and Navajo Indians were forced out of their lands and had to fend for themselves not to starve. Antonio helps them as much as he can. Russell urges his men to work together to survive the crusade. The men aren’t happy. Antonio recalls when he took Elena to Las Vegas and was surprised to see how Americans had taken over. Antonio and the Indians find each other and decide to join forces to hunt down the rangers. Finally, the rangers fight and shoot each other; J.D and the preacher escape, taking Elena with them. Antonio finds a dead ranger and Russell, severely injured. Russell tells Antonio about Calhoun and how he tried to help Elena. Antonio goes after the two men; they fight, and Antonio is able to kill the preacher and hold Calhoun at a knife’s point. Tired of all the death surrounding the rivalry between the peoples, he decides to let Calhoun go with the promise he will never harm Mexicans. Antonio and Elena ride back home; she asks about her family members and Joseph. Antonio realizes he soon might have grandchildren.

    About The Author

    Kermit Lopez is a writer, electrical engineer, and lawyer from New Mexico, where he lives with his wife and children. "Cibolero" is the result of years of researching his family ancestry, which spans four hundred years of New Mexico history.