Eye on the Amazon

The Last Guardians: A Must-Watch Film Highlights the Indigenous Fight for Environmental Justice

The Last Guardians

Now available for download and streaming, The Last Guardians takes viewers to the Ecuadorian Amazon to further understand the struggle of indigenous community members as they defend their land and culture against the threats they face from extractive industries.

Filmmakers Joe Tucker and Adam Punzano interview leaders of the Sapara and the Kichwa of Sarayaku – long-time Amazon Watch partners – who provide a first-hand account of the current climate and environmental justice crisis in the Amazon. Through storytelling, these representatives relate their everyday struggles as the Ecuadorian government continues to back oil companies whose activities deforest the Amazon, poison the water, and destroy homes and families.

This film provides viewers with an opportunity to understand the effects that extractive industries have on the indigenous people of the Amazon while also illustrating what the world would lose if these practices continue. By highlighting the systemic contamination for which the well-financed oil-giant Chevron is liable – even though it continues to reject responsibility – we see the devastation wrought by the dumping of millions of gallons of crude oil and toxic wastewater into the Amazon. In a particularly heart-wrenching scene, a father attests to this as he mourns the death of his two young daughters.

But all hope is not lost, as the film clearly demonstrates. Cameras capture how Sapara and Sarayaku communities are working to protect their territories and cultures and highlight the central role that resilient indigenous women leaders play at the forefront of the struggle.

Testimony from leaders like Manari Ushigua and Sabina Gualinga sheds light on their philosophy and way of life and raises awareness on the immeasurable value indigenous knowledge has for our current movement to protect the Amazon and the global climate.

Amazon Watch proudly supported the production of this film, including providing footage that is featured in the film. We will continue to support these communities and hope that you will take this opportunity to watch and share this important film with your family and friends.

And by watching, you support the communities themselves! 20% of all Vimeo revenue will be donated to the communities featured in the film. Watch it here for only $1.99.

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