Veins of the Amazon

Peru, DOK Leipzig competition 2021

Documentary by Álvaro Sarmiento, Diego Sarmiento, Terje Toomistu


In the Peruvian Amazon, the main means of transport for goods and people since the times of the rubber boom and the infamous adventures of Fitzcarraldo are the ferries navigating the majestic Amazon River.


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In its crude harbours, porters work their fingers to the bone carrying tons of onions, sugar, oil, sodas, motorbikes, and building materials on their wet bodies to fill another ferry for the journey into the depths of the Amazon rain forest. The ferries bear products from the global marketplace in exchange with the exotic goods from the jungle. Yet the ferries also form a distinct space of transition for the travellers taking journeys that can last for weeks, for the crew who strip their sexual identities as well as for the indigenous people living on the edges of the Amazon.