At a time when mainstream country music has never been worse, movies have decided that country music is the language of unlikely dreamers. There are two movies this year about country-star hopefuls coming from unlikely places: Wild Rose is about an aspiring country singer from working class Glasgow, and Yellow Rose is about a young Filipina immigrant caught up in the US’s cruel immigration system with country music dreams of her own. The first trailer for Yellow Rose just dropped, and I challenge you not to get choked up while watching it.

I feel like Duana should be writing about this movie, with its strong Broadway ties. Yellow Rose co-stars Lea Salonga: she is, of course, a Tony Award winner for Miss Saigon, she also played both Eponine and Fantine in Les Miserables (her version of “On My Own” is the best, don’t @ me), and she provided the singing voices for Princess Jasmine and Mulan. I don’t even like musical theater and I know Lea Salonga’s credits and her impact as one of the first—if not THE first—Asian American Broadway star, that’s how high up the Musical Theater Royalty Chart she is. And the star of Yellow Rose, Eva Noblezada, was just a Tony nominee for Hadestown (the only musical I am currently interested in). Yellow Rose is a movie built on Broadway.

But it is about country music. In the case of Yellow Rose, it feels like a sly way to get a certain demographic to watch the movie and invest in the story of an undocumented immigrant at the mercy of an insane, inhumane system. I don’t know if those people can be reached. I think if they could, things wouldn’t have got so far as “kids in actual cages” and “reopening internment camps” in the US. But if those people can be reached, country music might be the only way in, which is not stereotyping, because the secret about country music, at least in America, is that everyone likes it. Everyone has a favorite country song. It might not be your favorite type of music, you might not know any of the current country stars, but everyone has that one country song that they absolutely LOVE. The (unacknowledged) universal appeal of country is why a song like “Old Town Road” becomes an instant hit. So country music is a great way to backdoor a story about immigration and hope to an audience that might otherwise refuse to listen.