Fordlandia Malaise + Sour Lake
A film about the memory and the present of Fordlandia, the company town founded by Henry Ford in the Amazon rain forest in 1928. His aim was to break the British rubber monopoly and produce this material in Brazil for his car production in the United States. Today, the remains of construction testify to the scale of the failure of this neocolonialist endeavor that lasted less than a decade.
Today, Fordlandia is a space suspended between times, between the 20th and 21st centuries, between utopia and dystopia, between visibility and invisibility: architectural buildings of steel, glass, and masonry still remain in use while traces of indigenous life left no marks on the ground.
*Content warning: The opening passage of Fordlandia Malaise contains strobe lighting
Andrés Dávila | 2019 | Colombia, Ecuador | 15mins
Inspired by the name of a Texas oil city, Sour Lake was the name given by Texaco in the 1960s to a small town recast in the Ecuadorian jungle, known in Spanish as Lago Agrio. This name gives origin to the framework from which the short film was made, shot from the surroundings of this city to the Colombian Andes, where the vegetation of the jungle begins to fuse with the mountains.
These geographical sites – connected with each other for centuries – are crossed by numerous economic, ecological, political and territorial issues that arose since the sixteenth century, when the Spanish conquistadors explored them in search for El Dorado. It is from these geographical, social and imaginary confluences that Sour Lake interrogates the relationship between these territories and their inhabitants.
Presented in collaboration with IberoDocs