Straddling the northernmost border between Colombia and Venezuela, all
the way up by wildest Caribbean Sea, the Wayuu people dwell in the thirsty
landscapes of the La Guajira Peninsula. A matriarchal group
that counts its time in moons, the Wayuu have bleeding female deities with
hidden teeth, and fierce courting dances that only end when the male tumbles
onto the ground. Wayuu girls will grow to become shamans or politicians, and of
them are required wisdom, patience and willpower all from a very young age.
Pili is only twelve when she welcomes puberty accordingly to the traditional
custom, by spending twelve moons, a whole year or so, in almost complete
seclusion. Director Priscila Padilla Farfan follows her most respectfully, handing her camera from time
to time to those few female members of the family allowed to visit Pili in her mud
hut, or taking the viewer through her midnight baths and medicinal infusions.
In her windowless room, Pili spends her days drifting off on a makeshift
hammock, wearing bright orange or red silk, and weaving with her flashlight just
like Penelope, up till the early hours of morning while her grandmother outside
dismisses the generous offers of her suitors. La Eterna Noche de las
Doce Lunas premiered
in Berlin a couple of days ago, in the
middle of the Tiergarten park on a snowy afternoon.
For those of you who understand either Spanish or German,
images via berlinale.de