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Colombia: The Sacred Plant of the Amazon

The ayahuasca -or Banisteriopsis caapi- is considered sacred and has been used by 72 different tribes throughout the Amazon region for centuries. In Columbia, on the Amazon plain of Mocoa, Bernard Fontanille sets out to gain a better understanding of the traditional uses of ayahuasca, known locally as "Yagé." The Inga shaman, or "Taïta," Aureliano Chindoy, leads him into ancestral territories. For Aureliano, Yagé transforms human beings and is the source of all medicinal knowledge.
2016; 2014

Aluna: The Kogi People's Message

Living on an isolated pyramid mountain in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta in Colombia, the Kogi are the last surviving civilization from the world of the Inca and Aztec, and their cities are untouched by the outer world. The mountain is quite literally a micro-cosmos, a mirror of the planet on which every ecological zone is represented and in which most of the plants and animals of the planet can live. The Kogi believe that they live in order to care for the world and keep its natural order functioning, and they understand that mining and deforestation are destroying the critical interconnections within the natural world. The words of the Kogi message are "protect the rivers," and this program shows how crucial it is to draw on indigenous understanding of environmental challenges an [...]
2015; 2012

Colombia: Worlds Together

Columbia: Worlds Together gives an overview of the country's history, culture, and cuisine.
2014; 2013

The Big Picture: Operation Amigo

In this classic episode of the U.S. Army's The Big Picture television series, cameras show civic action at work in Latin and South America with assistance offered by members of the U.S. Army. Featuring footage provided by the National Archives Records and Administration, this documentary look at road-building, medical help, and education for the masses as they happened. This digitally remastered version may reveal limitations of the technology available at the time of performance.
2012; 2008

Colombia and Venezuela [electronic resource]

As Jonathan travels across Colombia and Venezuela, he discovers that they have strikingly divergent modern realities. Colombia, for so long synonymous with drug wars, is also a country of hope and resilience. Jonathan cycles with a visionary mayor around the streets of Bogotá, meets a reformed FARC fighter, goes to a coffee farm in the Andes, visits a cemetery in Medellín, and enjoys watching a group of breakdancing kids from the notorious hillside slums. In Venezuela, Jonathan searches for a sense of the true spirit of this polarized nation. He finds himself at an anti-U.S. rally, joins a police patrol in a crime-ridden section of Caracas, rides with cowboys, and listens to a youth orchestra drawn from two previously warring neighborhoods.

Bogota [electronic resource]: Improving Civic Behavior

Soon more than 550 cities world wide will have a population of more than one million. In 2030 eighty percent of the world's population will live in cities. Megacities have traditionally been economic and political power centers but today the fastest growing cities are in developing nations.

Todos Tus Muertos

In this eerie and fantastically shot tragicomic satire, an ordinary farmer's morning routine is interrupted when he makes a grim discovery in the middle of his cornfield--a huge pile of dead bodies. Aghast, he reports the mysterious massacre on what happens to be Election Day. When the small-town mayor and police lieutenant take notice, fearful of unleashing a public scandal, they stall and intimidate the farmer and his family. Meanwhile, the sun beats down, and the eerie corpses remain, refusing to be ignored. --

A los 15 Uno Ya Es Grande

Fifteen years seems like a short time, but it is actually more than enough time to deceive yourself into thinking you’re all grown up already, an easy conclusion when you’re just fifteen. This is an age for rebelling and opposing the system, when one becomes aware of one's surroundings and the tools for dealing with the next 15. It is from out of this emotional naivete, and the delusional certainty that it is meaningful and continues being worth the trouble, that this story is told, about the 15 year history of Latin America's biggest free rock festival, one of the most important in the world. --

Colombia [electronic resource]: Flowers for the Gringo

As in the case of coffee, sugar, and other cultivated products, the floral industry would collapse without a steady supply of cheap labor. This program goes inside the world of Colombia's flower growers, in particular those who work the hardest for the lowest pay. Profiling two women with varying experiences, the film reveals both the tenuous nature of life on the industry's bottom rung - Hilda was fired after injuring her shoulder in the workplace - and the occasional ray of hope, as evidenced by Gloria's employer, who pays above the minimum wage. The program also features a union activist fighting an uphill battle to improve worker conditions, reminding viewers that human and corporate interests can rarely be tied into a pretty bouquet.

Colombia's Guerrilla War [electronic resource]: Sundered Nation

In Colombia, government and paramilitary forces are terrorizing the populace to deprive the FARC and NLF guerrillas of civil support. But far from stamping out the war, this policy has led to an escalation that threatens to destroy the country. This program combines newsreel and documentary footage of life and death in Colombia's rural districts, cities, and guerrilla camps with interviews to explore the roots and the results of the 20th century's longest guerrilla war. Members of Bogota's Institute of Political Studies, the Red Cross, and the Church; army officers; guerrillas; politicians; and some of the 1.5 million refugees air their views on the terror and the tragedy of a nation divided.
2006; 1999

Mission [electronic resource]: Colombia

The United States is pumping a huge amount of aid money into the Colombian army. Is the goal to kill coca plants, or is it to destroy the FARC anti-government forces? Is FARC really more concerned with protecting the coca crop than the coca farmers? And could Colombia become another Vietnam? This brief program raises these pointed questions as it visits Colombian army and FARC training bases. An excellent discussion-starter!

Coca Mama [electronic resource]: The War on Drugs

"Filmed over a year in four countries, this documentary shows us coca-growing peasants, anti-narcotic patrols, U.S. law-makers, and the Colombian rebels who stand accused of protecting the drug trade"--Original container.

Lines of Blood: The Drug War in Colombia

This is a powerful investigation of the drug war which is raging in Colombia, the cocaine capital of the world. For almost a decade, the United States, backed by Britain and other Western countries, has tried to smash the powerful and wealthy drug cartels with little success. Coca growing has increased and has now spread into new areas. For 5,000 years the Indians of the Andes have relied on coca, the raw material of cocaine, to ease the harsh realities of their life. Coca has been at the very heart of their culture and economy. But when Western- ers began reducing it down to make cocaine, a savage industry of vast proportions was unleashed. Murder and terrorism have become commonplace as drug cartels protect their territory. The film criticizes the rigidity of U.S. policy which dogg [...]

The Last of the Cuiva [electronic resource]

This is the story of the last 600 of the dying Cuiva tribe in southeastern Colombia, for the most part still living a Stone Age existence as naked hunters and gatherers. The film focuses on changes in their culture and society, brought about through contact with Colombian settlers. We see two contrasting groups of Cuiva: The first is relatively isolated and lives the traditional nomadic life, as the men hunt and fish and the women gather. The second group has been drawn into the Colombian economy, working occasionally for the ranchers in order to earn money and buy trade goods. The Cuiva seem to be living the present-day role of the North American Indians of 150 years ago: driven off their hunting grounds by the cowboys, massacred if they insist on fighting for their homes.

Operation Amigo

From the U.S. Army's The Big Picture television series, 1950-1975.; "Civic action at work in Latin and South America with assistance offered by members of the U.S. Army. Road-building, medical help and education for the masses are demonstrated as they happened."--National Archives and Records Administration.