The film is being previewed in London on Friday July 11, as part of the First Amazon Film Festival.
In September 2013 LAB editors Sue Branford and Nayana Fernandez visited Jacareacanga on the Tapajós river where in June Munduruku Indians had briefly taken three scientists hostage, accusing the government of failing to consult the local population before carrying out ‘biological’ studies in preparation for building hydro-electric dams on the river. If built, the dams will have a huge impact on water flows, fish population and local communities.
Sue and Nayana interviewed two Munduruku women who had been to a demonstration against the giant Belo Monte dam on the Xingu river, who told them “The impact of these projects is a very bad thing for us. The government is going ahead with this projects and every day it is more advanced. Every day they’re arriving with different things. At the moment it’s more police and the arms forces are surrounding our villages. They think they are going to intimidate us, but we’re never going to be intimidated. Because we are here to fight for our people, for our children, for the nature.”
Later, the LAB editors attended one of the government’s supposed ‘consultation’ meetings, which they found to be a sorry sham. The full story of their trip can be read here.
Throughout their journey, Nayana was filming and recording interviews and she returned to the area in February 2014. Back in the UK she has been hard at work editing the material and has now directed and produced a remarkable and beautiful short documentary. The Munduruku Indians — Weaving Resistance which looks at life in a Munduruku village, where traditional skills are practised and children are brought up with remarkable freedom. It documents the growth of resistance, even among the women, not traditionally fighters, some of whom are emerging as guerreiras (woman warriors).
Nayana recalls that she first learned details about the Munduruku when she edited five brief vid eos sent in by LAB correspondents Bruna Rocha, Raoni Valle and Claide Moraes, which showed the attack by the Brazilian Federal Police and National Security Guard on the Teles Pires indigenous village in the northern state of Mato Grosso in January 2013, in which several people were injured and one man – Adenilson Kirixi Munduruku – was killed (Read more).
Some of the visual material and the interview with the Restinga village chief, Lamberto Paygu, were contributed by LAB partner Minguarana Producciones. Check out their web documentary about the destruction of the Tapajós river by the Brazilian government plans to dam the river and some of its tributaries: Quem Matou o Tapajós?, for which Nayana is also a contributor.
The special preview of ‘The Munduruku Indians: Weaving Resistance’ will take place on Friday July 11, at the First Amazon Film Festival in London, prior to its planned web-launch in August. Its screening will be followed by the remarkable documentary “Toxic: Amazon” by the Brazilian journalist Felipe Milanez, which you can watch online by clicking here. Pioneer LAB members Sue Branford and Jan Rocha will also take part in the panel discussion after both films. See more details of the Festival here.
‘The Munduruku Indians: Weaving Resistance’ launch online will also bring the film with version in Portuguese language, for the Brazilian audience, and Nayana plans to launch a crowd funding campaign to develop this second part of the project, which also aims to provide a platform of news, network and academic reference with content for, by and about the this Brazilian Indigenous group currently living under threat.
|| 1st AMAZON FILM FESTIVAL OFFER TO LAB READERS ||
The organizers of the Festival have kindly offered two free day-passes for each day of the Festival to LAB supporters. These will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. To reserve a pass, click here to e-mail your request, putting ‘Amazon Film Fest free pass for LAB’ into the subject line .