The documentary ‘Stepping Softly on the Earth’ seeks a way out of the Amazonian crisis by adopting an Indigenous worldview
With accounts from Ailton Krenak, Katia Silene Akrãtikatêjê, and other leaders, the production follows stories from the Amazon that aim to delay the end of the world
Stepping Softly on the Earth dives into the ruins that the expansion of capitalism has brought to the Amazon, and finds in the struggle of the Amazonian people and their ancestries, the horizons for exiting the chaos that we find ourselves in. With its release set for November 2021, the film listens to the survivors of a capitalist war against life, revealing the ancestral worldview that shows us the horizons of exit from the chaos that we find ourselves in.
Filmed in Peru, Colombia, and Brazil, including the cities of Santarém, Marabá, and Tabatinga, the script is by Bruno Malheiro, Geographer and Professor of the Universidade Federal do Sul e Sudeste do Pará (Federal University of South and Southeast Pará) and Marcos Colón, Professor of Flórida State University and the director of Beyond Fordlândia (2018). The production process took 18 months, suffering a series of interruptions imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The film, in four acts, begins with an announcement: the destruction of the Amazonian peoples is a path to the end of the world. It goes on to expose the ongoing War, with its machinery that functions as the destruction of life, unleashing Death, as a full expression of the choices we have made as a society. In the final act, the Horizons, the film dives into ancestrality as a way of placing the Amazonian worldview at the center of our Earth.
Stepping Softly on the Earth constructs each act with accounts from the people that have confronted the capitalist savagery in the Amazon. José Manuyama, the Kukama Indian from the Peruvian Amazon, deals with the contamination of the river through mining and oil. Tribal chief Emmanuel of the Munduruku people, in western Pará, has his territory under siege from the expansion of soy cultivation. Tribal chief Katia, of the Akrãntikatêgê people, from Marabá (PA), resides on a territory scarred by mining and various economic ventures.
With the powerful voice of radio broadcaster Mara Régia, we follow the worldview of Ailton Krenak and have his thoughts for inspiration. After all, in the words of the indigenous master: “the future is ancestral and humanity needs to learn from it to step softly on the earth”.
‘Stepping Softly on the Earth’
Screenplay: Bruno Malheiro & Marcos Colón
with Katia Silene Akrãtikatêjê, Mara Régia, Manoel Munduruku, José Manuyama e Ailton Krenak
Photography : Bruno Erlan & Marcos Colón<img
Editing and Original Soundtrack: Diego Farias
Executive production: Marcos Colón
Co-production: Amazônia Latitude Films
length: 72 minutes
Premiere: November 2021