EAMI (2022) - full transcript

The story happens in the Paraguayan Chaco, the territory with the highest deforestation rate in the world. 25,000 hectares of forest are being deforested a month in this territory which would mean an average of 841 hectares a day or 35 hectares per hour. The forest barely lives and this only due to a reserve that the Totobiegosode people achieved in a legal manner. They call Chaidi this place which means ancestral land or the place where we always lived and it is part of the "Ayoreo Totobiegosode Natural and Cultural Heritage". Before this, they had to live through the traumatic situation of leaving the territory behind and surviving a war. It is the story of the Ayoreo Totobiegosode people, told from the point of view of Asoja, a bird-god with the ability to bring an omniscient- temporal gaze, who becomes the narrator of this story developed in a crossing between documentary and fiction. It is a film that wants to tell the story of the Ayoreo people and the story of all the exiled. It aims to pre- serve a space of memory and wants to preserve a physical and a spiritual place - one that cannot be overthrown nor abolished.

There was a time

and it was the breath.

From that breath

the wind was born.

And from that wind came a song.

And from that song

We, the inhabitants of nature,
came to be.

I was among them, and then I was a bird.

I had the shape of a woman
and I begot the world.


The world was Ayoreo.

The man was Ayoreo.

The tiger was Ayoreo.

The fire was Ayoreo.

And I, who am a bird,
and my name is Asojá,

I was also Ayoreo.

I carry in my spirit...

the spirit of all those
who left the forest.

We used to live here.

We used to live together.

But then everything changed,

and we began to feel cold
during the heat,

and we began to have sun
when it was no longer time.

The strange sounds came...

and with them,
insensitive men and women,

...the coñone.

Our grandparents dreamed of fire...

...and then of ashes.

We heard the screams...

...they were the screams of the trees.

And I saw my people leave the forest.

Today I fly over a world that runs,

as my people once ran.

Today my wings are damaged,


my eyes...

My eyes are closed.

The coñone! The coñone!

Who are you?

Eami, I’m the lizard.

And my friend Aocojái?

We don't know.

We're alone.

We got lost, Eami. We all got lost.

Heal, Eami.

We have survived.

Heal your soul.

Keep sadness away.

Heal your soul of the evil
of the coñone.

Begin this flight...

My wings were wounded,

my eyes were closed.

I carried all my memories with me.

I no longer had my parents.

And now I don't know
what happened to my friends, either.

Are they alive?

Have they escaped?



My friend!

You were able to escape!

Why can't you hear me?


My friend ran...

I took flight again and looked
for him in the forest.

I was trying to at least hear
his voice...

I heard voices...

And I looked for his voice...

At that time,
life in the forest was very difficult...

...because we were already afraid.

In those days of our life in the forest...

...we were afraid of small planes...

...that crossed the sky...

...because we thought

they could land
in our territory at any time.

The voices of my parents
and grandparents came...

They were also looking
for their loved ones.

I want to find Aocojái...

Am I going to see him again?

Is he perhaps lost?

Does he have water?

Could it be that he is hiding?

Tie up the beasts!
Tie them up!

They could escape!

They are already tied up!

I think there's nobody left here.

Keep your eyes wide open anyway.
Watch out for their spears.

I wanted to find my friends...

Lizard, where are we?

Eami, we have to follow this path.

Where are we going?

Go ahead, Eami,
there are places waiting for you.

When it happened, we were together,

looking for honey.

Then someone yelled:

And we all got lost.

Chícode, Esói!

They escaped!

Have you lost your turtle?

I felt only silence.

He had lost his turtle.

What happened to her?

Lizard, why can't they hear me?

Come on Eami,

they will also find their way.

I resumed my flight again.

And my friend Aocojái?

How to follow a path without him?

Could I walk with that sadness?

Are we the same
when we lose those we love?

I thought about my parents,

and the times I imagined their faces...

I thought of my friends.

I thought of honey and its taste.

And I thought of the wind,

when it blows strongly and it moves us.

All the inhabitants of the forest
receive words...

My friends looked for words

that would lead them to their turtle...

Chícode felt her life and she felt his.

Before, everything in the forest
was beautiful.

But, the saddest thing for me...

...was the fact that I didn't hear
about my father again,

who still lives in the forest,

I would have liked to see him again.

Perhaps, if he were with us,
he'd leave the forest...

We can't be sure now.

No one stands up! Have you heard?

These beasts always bring trouble.

And this old man,
he shouldn't play brave.

Take a good look at this one.

Go and feed the dogs,
that will shut them up.

I already fed them.

That bitch is nervous
because she just gave birth.

- Did you look at the puppies?
- They're fine.

We can't let those dogs die...

The boss lady would come down on us.

Let me deal with it.


There was Dicasei.

The coñone got him!

They already warned us
this would happen.

The wind was blowing very hard,
from inside her.

And we, the birds, were inside the wind.

We were flying in circles over


Chamiadaté. Can you hear me?

Yes, you are the wind.

I come to blow in this land
because I bring words.

The bad fire will come to the eami.

You'll have to walk on the ashes.

And nothing will be the same.

We didn't know what was going
to happen that day.

And suddenly, a vehicle came.

And we thought they were going
to kill the women.

We knew our place would be invaded.

And we could only prepare for that.

The decision was that when we leave,

we will all leave together,
without fear.

If they kill us,
best if they kill us all,

so no one is left to regret it.

All the women were
in the vegetable garden,

accompanied by men,

but we still screamed when
we saw them coming after us.

Open your eyes.

Shall we all have to heal eternally?

Do wounds ever heal?

Open your eyes.

My friend Dicasei also had a wound.

He had a bird.

They were inseparable.

At the time of the Invasion
it flew away because of the shots.

He was now a prisoner of the coñone,

but he could only think of his bird.

Come on, Eami!
We can't get caught by night.

But Dicasei lost his bird...

Eami, come on...

I don't want to leave Dicasei...

We have to find our friends...

I continued flying.


I thought of our lives.

I thought of those who invade our lands.

I thought of us, children,
when we see someone die.

I thought of farewells.

Am I also saying goodbye to this place?

Did you go to see
if all the dogs are there?

They are.

Can a coñón move our spirit
from its place?

Can anyone break
a bird's friend's heart?

Come on, Eami, don't get distracted.

We're almost there.

Are we leaving?

There is something you have to take...

It's here Eami.

Did we leave already?


We were the ones who lived here.


That day the lizard showed me my life.

My father used to come here.

He came to hunt wild boars.

He'd cross this lagoon
and enter that forest.

In this memory,
I saw his face for the first time.

When this was a forest,
my mother came here.

Now I can remember

when sometimes
she curled up to sleep with me.

Her body covered me...

I wanted to stay there forever...

Today is forever Eami...


I could see my mother's face...

My face was her face
and my eyes were hers.

Her face is your face.

Her eyes are your eyes, Eami.

This was the place of my grandparents...

Here, they met for their ceremonies.

Here, my friend Dicasei opened his eyes.

Here, he taught me that

when we look into each other's eyes,
we are free.

Here I harvested honey...

...with my beloved friend Aocojái.

I saw my friends' turtle,

...she had been lost after the invasion.

She told me that our huts being burned

and that to save herself
she took refuge in her shell.

When she came out,
nothing was the same in the Eami.

Remember Eami,
because we won't be able to come back...

Never again?

If we leave, we can't come back.

Eami, we have to leave now...

Stop playing, stop calling the wind.

Before the coñone, we lived here...

They kept our last images
and sounds of the forest.

My last sound as an inhabitant
of the forest

was that of the invasion.
My last scream was

when they pushed us out of the forest.

The Mennonites
sent people to come find us.

They were carrying a recording device.

The one that can be heard screaming
in the background was me.

It was me who told my people:

"We are going to kill them all".

Because we heard them saying that
they were going to catch us.

There was no peace for us at that time.

From inside that machine,

we could hear
the shouting of when we confronted them.



Open your eyes...

We all need your eyes...

One of us had to open his eyes.

In our eyes, we keep all the landscapes.

There are thick forests...

There are lagoons...
And skies about to rain...

There are the trails...
With all of us in the forest.

The Eami remained in our eyes...

But, as we leave,
the darkness takes over,

like when we step
on a vine thorn at night.

How to heal a wound
that is in so much pain?

At that moment, I wished to feel
the voice of my mother.

Her face, beautiful as a fruit,

spoke words that knew how to heal me.

She was the one who called me Eami.

Which for us means forest and world.

We are all the forest
and the world to someone.

Come on, Eami,
that's a lot of seeds already!

I'm gathering some for Aocojái.

Come on Eami, time is upon us!


My friend?


My friend! My friend!

They killed my friend!

Come, mothers of the forest,
to hug my friend...

I don't want him to die...

Save my friend!

I don't want my friend to die!

They had killed my friend.

I stayed by his side... And I cried.

My friend...

I thought of my father,
and asked for his strength.

I thought that without my friend,

I was alone in the eami.

The whole forest mourned
my friend's death with me.

That day, the eami showed me
all the deaths,

and all the goodbyes.

The mothers consoled me...

...in my last dream inside the forest.

Eami, are you ready?


Let's go...

This was my last journey
as an inhabitant of the forest.

All the animals knew
that this flight was a farewell,

and I felt the compassion
of the forest.

And it felt mine.

The birds sang
their most melodious melody.

The snake accompanied my journey.

The tiger guided me with its footprints

and protected my departure.

They all accompanied my leaving.

For adults, leaving the forest,

it meant death was coming.

Many of us...

...could not bear to live like a coñone...

...and some let themselves die.

Sadness came to us,

for the death of our mothers.

My sister was called Utacaé,
that's what they called her.

She died because she had the flu,

and we were not vaccinated.

Chamiadaté, the shaman woman,

like my mother,
they were the first women...

...who died after contact,

because they didn't want to eat
the coñone's food.

Everything was sad.

The beasts are coming,
get them, get them!

Get out, get the fuck out!

Catch the old one!
Catch the old one!

- Nooo! Here comes the other one!
- The dogs! The dogs!

The dogs are out!

Get them! Get them!
Get them, goddammit!

Fucking shit!
It bit me!

My friend,
I told you to keep them tied up!

Now we must tell the boss lady
that her dog died!

She has many dogs,
there are the puppies. They are there.

As I left the forest

I remembered
the last time I was with my friend.

I asked my grandparents
to heal his fatal wounds.

I asked them to heal
his death as a child.

I wondered what would happen
to my friend now...

Could Aocojái now be a fruit?

Or be wind?

Or salt?

Or water?

I see birds above me...

I see birds above me...

I see birds above me...

I see birds above me...

The lizard taught me

to carry the forest
and the world inside me.

I walked towards the coñone
with the Eami inside me.

Before leaving,
I thought of the last words.

About the last songs.

About the last glances.

I thought about eyes...

I thought about what we've left...

and I thought about what we have left.

Open your eyes, Eami.