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Film Info
Section:Valley of the Docs
Mind the Gap
Viva el Cine
Festival Encore
Running Time:88 min.
Director:Claudia Sparrow
Producer:Ryan Schwartz
Claudia Sparrow
Cinematographer:Philip Knowlton
Magela Crosignani
Leandro Marini
Note Writer:Victoria Jaschob


Screening note: This digital screening is available to view until 11:59pm PT on Sunday, October 25.


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In the Peruvian Andes, indigenous farmer Máxima Acuño lives in harmony with nature, farming her own land and raising sheep to support her family. Surrounded by crystalline lakes and rich meadows, Máxima considers the land her “mother”—providing everything she needs. Not far from this mountain paradise lies the enormous Yanacocha gold mine, owned by the American Newmont Mining Corporation and co-funded by the World Bank. When the mine seeks to expand its operations, Maxima’s land is in their way, and the mine owners enlist the services of the Peruvian government police to intimidate and pressure her into leaving her home. To defend her family and way of life, Máxima hires a lawyer and becomes an eco-warrior, enlisting the support of the local community. Máxima even wins the prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize in her quest for justice in this stirring David-versus-Goliath document of environmental and human rights—which won the Audience Award at this year's Hot Docs.


La campesina indígena Máxima Acuña vive en armonía con la naturaleza, criando sus ovejas en los Andes peruanos. Cuando una mina de oro local busca expandir sus operaciones, amenazando su tierra y su forma de vida, Máxima inspira a la comunidad a luchar, en esta conmovedora historia de justicia ambiental de David contra Goliat.

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Additional Information

Born and raised in Lima, Peru, Claudia has been recognized as one of the ten most prominent filmmakers in Peru. Her film I Remember You, starring Stefanie Butler (Stranger Things) and Joe Egender (The Night Of), had a theatrical and VOD release in 2016. Her American Film Institute thesis film El americano, shot in Lima and Los Angeles, won an Emmy Award® in the drama category. Claudia is also the recipient of the Franklin J. Schaffner Fellow Award for directing El americano. She is a 2018 Film Independent fellow.