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O fisherman, my oldman| 58mins
Director: Amaya Sumpsi | Producer: Diana Diegues
Focus Years: 2013 | Country: Portugal
Subject Tags: community, europe, globalization, livelihood, portugal, resources, water
Quality Tags: Optimistic, Slow, Activating, Harmonizing
On the night of Carnival in 2005, something mysterious happens at Porto Formoso bay, leaving the fishing boats wrecked. Next morning, the population believes that it was a wave from the deadly Indonesian tsunami that took place two months before, thousands of miles away. Filmed in São Miguel, the main island of the Azorean archipelago, this documentary follows Porto Formoso's community from that night on to 2012. Facing the new scenario, fishermen do not give up: with much effort they build new boats, bigger than the old ones. However, new problems arise: as the new boats go to work, fishermen realize that with their new sizes, the boats can no longer be docked in the small and natural port of the village. Struggling for better conditions, the strong fishing community demands that a concrete dock be built, before the fishing heart of the village disappears. Surprisingly, many inhabitants do not want the construction to progress: when asked why, they talk about the value of the natural landscape, and about the existence of a “castle” that lies next to the boats, referring to an insignificant and indeterminate ruin. If to some residents the natural landscape and the ruins look worthless, for many more they are the village’s soul and future, a piece of history and beauty that a lot of tourists would like to visit… What is the criteria for choosing sites as heritage or tourism spots? Can tourism be compatible with other economic activities, or does it ruin places by turning them into show stages? What is the community’s weight in the decision process? Is it tourism or fishing that will bring progress to this village? Could it be both? As time goes on, the landscape and its community are transformed, and so are the life and thoughts of the director. Following her voice, we follow the story of the last 7 years of this community.
O fisherman, my oldman | 58mins

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