Environmental activist and up-and-coming young Dutch director Chihiro Geuzebroek‘s recent film project Radical Friends – a mov(i)ement of friendship addresses the complex issue of environmental destruction and its global effects, in an unconventional manner. The film is an interesting mix between a road movie and a very personal documentary. Geuzebroek filmed her experiences using a Panasonic HPX 171e and the FSB 8 SL MCF tripod system from Sachtler, (a Vitec Group brand).
At the center of the film directed by the young Dutch woman with Bolivian roots is the question of how she could actually contribute to climate justice and international understanding. So, Geuzebroek made her way to the homeland of her ancestors to find out more about the folk belief surrounding Pachamama (Mother Earth) to understand how this influences Bolivia’s fight for climate justice and better interpersonal cohabitation.
Geuzebroek described herself as an idealist. “I had to accept that simply knowing better does not really help. Action is necessary and must be taken together with others,” explained the filmmaker. With her inspirational journey into another world, her goal is to document how environmental conservation and international understanding can only take place when they happen on a personal level. On her journey, Geuzebroek not only met and filmed environmental activists and students, but also farmers and even the Bolivian President Evo Morales.
Experienced Bolivian camera operator Freddy Delgado accompanied the young director and shared his wealth of experience with her. “We filmed in different cities such as La Paz, Cochabamba, Potosí, Sucre and Charazani, mostly outside on the streets. Whether in rain or direct sun, Sachtler equipment was extremely dependable. The impressive footage of the Bolivian capital city, La Paz, from a very high vantage point in El Alto, was shot perfectly with the FSB 8. The Sachtler tripod system was also used at a press conference with President Evo Morales and then proved itself during filming under difficult conditions in the mines of Potosí,” said Geuzebroek.
In La Paz, the small team mainly walked or used public transportation and therefore really appreciated the light weight of the tripod system. “Lightweight but extremely stable – these were perfect conditions for this project. Sachtler equipment provided us with the most mobility possible, and fast and simple set up and dismantling. It is user friendly in every aspect,” said Delgado.
“Thanks to the professional equipment, it was possible to document the diverse impressions and encounters for such a unique film and achieve exactly what I imagined,” said Geuzebroek. “After my return to the Netherlands, I want the film to inspire and make a call for change. I am looking forward to 2012 when the documentary is going on a worldwide festival tour.”