Three countries. One passion. Three hundred bodies climbing, reaching the sky to build a human tower — all for a touch of glory. In Mumbai, India, Sandeep, a coach with high dreams and a debilitating case of malaria leads his team of men to break the record and build India’s biggest human tower at the one-day Dahi Handi Festival. In Vilafranca del Penedès, Spain, a group of “castellers”, or climbers formed by men, women and children, dedicate their lives to reach the heavens and share their passion with the world following a tradition that goes back 400 years. An old legendary coach, Melilla, takes his passion to Santiago, Chile, hoping to empower and help the local groups to improve their performances while unifying them as a community. Pressed for time, Melilla needs to prepare the Chilean team for their first public performance at the Universal Forum of Cultures in Valparaiso where they will attempt the first seven-level tower in Chile. Helped by Luis, a very passionate scholar and leader of this initiative in Chile, they develop a plan that will become a symbolic first step to rebuild Chilean society from the bottom up through the human towers. The film cuts between the three countries leading to a major climatic scene that will take your breath away and keep you on the edge of your seats.
In Santiago, Mumbai, and Vilafranca del Penedès, all it takes is one shaky foot and the human tower falls, sending hundreds of bodies tumbling in the rain or into the mud or onto the crumbling pavement of a forgotten neighborhood. But the makers of these human towers keep starting again for the glory of seeing how high, altogether, they can go. A passion beyond race, borders, and ages. A global story of fearless skills and heart-bounding suspense of immense human towers. (75 minute Feature Documentary)
OUR STORY IN MAKING THE MOVIE: Human towers are medicine for the soul. You risk your life for a moment of sublime camaraderie and community. Trust is paramount. All it takes is one shaky foot and the entire tower falls, sending you and hundreds of others tumbling into the air, onto each other and then onto the pavement. Building human towers is more than a quirky attraction, more than an international sport and more than a refuge for lost youth. It’s more even than a thirst for the glory of winning. A human tower, when done right, represents a unparalleled passion for human connection that goes beyond race, borders and ages. In this sense, the world’s best human tower builders represent all of us — all people, all communities, all nations — in our hope for a better future.
FESTIVALS: Margaret Mead Film Festival, DocBarcelona, Delhi International Film Festival, 9th Children’s India International Children’s Film Festival’s Competitive Section, & EthnoFilm Festival in Croatia (winner).