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Guarani, Portuguese with English subtitles

On the violent border between Brazil and Paraguay, a battle between agribusiness and indigenous sovereignty wages. Filmmakers Laura Faerman and Marina Weis outline the clash between lawyer Luana Ruiz, heiress to the contested land and staunch Jair Bolsonaro supporter, and Alenir Ximendes, Guarani-Kaiowá leader, teacher, and activist. A powerful cinematic chronicle of Ximendes’s courageous fight against Ruiz and agribusiness to protect her community, culture, and indigenous lands.

The land in dispute is the Ñande Ru Marangatu Indigenous Territory, which has been inhabited by the Guarani-Kaiowá Indigenous people for at least 1500 years. Farmers only arrive in the region in the 1940s.

About the Director
Laura Faerman has been working as a documentarist, researcher, and curator for the past 20 years. In 2014, Faerman worked as an audiovisual researcher at the Indigenous National Truth Commission, which investigated for the first time the violations of rights committed against Native populations during the 1964-1985 military dictatorship in Brazil. She created the six 26-minute episode series Dangerous Memory with Marina Weis. The Wind Blows the Border is her ninth film as director, her first feature film.

Marina Weis was born in São Paulo, Brazil, and has directed five short films as a photographer, producer, and editor. We Others, her first experimental documentary, is inspired by a dreamlike journey of Latin American exchanges. She curated the film showcase Memory and Transformation for the Vladimir Herzog Institute. Also framing the memory of military dictatorship years in South America she co-directed, with Laura Faerman, the short film Vlado and Birri: encounters. The Wind Blows the Border (2022) is her second documentary feature film and a partnership between the two filmmakers.

Notes on Film

“After a long research in different Indigenous Lands in Mato Grosso do Sul, we decided to delve into the Ñande Ru Marangatu Indigenous Lands, emblematic for being one of the first retaken territories in this state.

The documentary features two central female characters. The protagonist, whose journey we follow, is the Kaiowá teacher Alenir Aquino Ximendes. In her native language, she leads the viewer from the local conflict to the transnational struggle for indigenous rights.

On the other side is Luana Ruiz, heiress to the disputed property, who qualified professionally as a lawyer to fight for the lands bought by her grandfather in the second half of the 20th century. With her presence, as well as that of her father, mother, and uncle (respectively a farmer, an anthropologist, and a politician), antagonistic perspectives emerge and conflict is established in the clash of versions, adding greater complexity to the narrative.”

– Laura Faerman & Marina Weis, Directors