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Watch the trailer:
Partially shot by the film’s subjects and filmed over the course of several years, director Alex Pritz’s feature documentary debut follows the struggle of the Uru-eu-wau-wau people as they defend their land from deforestation. With breathtaking cinematography of the dramatic landscape as parts of the Amazon rainforest burn, The Territory offers insight into the precious — and precarious — ecosystems under threat.
There are fewer than 200 people living in the Uru-eu-wau-wau community, and the film follows how this small group of mighty land defenders protect the sovereignty of more than 18,000 square kilometres of rainforest from non-natives who seek to exploit it. Bitaté Uru-eu-wau-wau, a young Indigenous leader, and his mentor Neidinha Bandeira decide to try a new tactic to protect their land and community: they create their own news media team to reclaim their story, risking their lives to expose the truth. The Territory is an arresting look at the tireless fight of the Uru-eu-wau-wau, and the ever-present dangers of exploitative expansion and colonialism.
It’s a beautiful film, and certainly an enraging one.
Alissa Wilkinson, Vox
The film’s sympathies are clear… But its strength lies in the way it offers intimate access to people on several clashing sides of the situation, making for a complex, layered and thoughtful examination.
Sheri Linden, Hollywood Reporter
The Territory is fearless filmmaking. A runaway hit at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, the film is a gripping environmental saga. It’s a thrilling feat that sees art and activism collide. Moreover, this film should be studied as an example of engaged collaborative filmmaking.
Pat Mullen, POV Magazine