Suspensión (2019) - full transcript

Deep in the misty jungle of southern Colombia, between treacherously steep mountain slopes, stands an unfinished concrete bridge as an absurd symbol of human folly. Once intended as a link ...

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THE PATH THAT CONNECTED
THE VAST AMAZONIAN JUNGLE

TO THE REST OF THE COUNTRY
WAS THE MOST UNUSUAL

AND TERRIBLE THING
THAT CAN BE IMAGINED.

IT WAS LIKE IF
AN EVIL SPIRIT HAD FUN

SPREADING PRECIPICES
AND CANYONS

TO PREVENT ACCESS
TO THAT SOLITARY NATURE.

FRIAR CANET DEL MAR
CAPUCHIN MISSIONARY (1924)

SUSPENSION

It looks there are three!

This is a very sad news.



A river of mud near Murallas, on the
road that connects Pasto to Mocoa,

carried 8 vehicles, 2 buses,
several jeeps and an ambulance.

So far, 20 bodies
have been found.

It is assumed that about 70 people
were circulating on the road.

I was working.

- Are you a driver?
- Yes, sir.

- Do you always work on this road?
- Yes, all the time.

Why they call it
the "Springboard of Death"?

Well, because this road
is very dangerous.

And it is so bad in some places
that you are always risking your life.

Would you like to ask something
to the government?

We would like the government
to hear us

and build the
Mocoa-San Francisco road,

because this is a disaster.



- A graveyard?
- Yes, sir.

Is it difficult to work
with this zip line?

Yes, but we are providing
a service to the community.

Aren't people afraid?

Yes, very afraid. But it is the
only way to cross the landslide.

Are you scared, boy?

Yes!

And you? Are you afraid?

No, sir.

Well, there goes the zip line!

Keep your head down.

Finally, the road was opened

on July 30, 1991.

Since then,
we've constantly monitoring

any crack that may appear

and that can indicate
new landslides.

This is the beginning
of the rural section

of the road
that goes to Putumayo.

To be more exact,
the Pasto-Mocoa section.

This stretch
constantly lives in construction,

made by contractors
from the National Roads Institute.

A rural taxi in full activity.

Subhuman conditions
for passengers.

Accident on the stretch
between kilometers 46 and 47,

just before La Palanca.
It wasn't serious.

The road to Mocoa...

The terrain is very steep.

It was built more than 30 years ago
and has never undergone maintenance.

Note that the road
is very narrow

and there is a rock formation
on the left.

Stretch Buenos Aires.

Face to face with a truck.

Is it a two-way road?

I ask...
The stretch of Los Monos...

Road to Mocoa...

A slide of stones,

which descended
from the mountainside.

A steep slope
with large amounts of biomass

in the upper area...

Once again,
we see the roadbed,

and a part of the lower slope...

showing signs of a precipice.

Unfortunately, clouds prevent
a more detailed view.

Traffic conditions on this

stretch of climb
to El Mirador...

Jeep reversing.

We are about...

30, 40 meters from the top.

We are at the top
of the mountain.

Stop the car, please!

The Amazonian plains,

that resemble the sea.

Zones with high risk
of landslides.

Observe the abyss below.

The contractor's jeep...

and the road,

seen in the direction of Mocoa,

capital of the Department
of Putumayo.

How are we, Guillermo?

It is one o'clock
in the afternoon.

We are 32 km from...

San Francisco.

You got what you wanted,
didn't you?

After all,
we must thank the Lord God.

In 1985,

I wanted to be a road engineer.

I started to get involved
with politics...

hoping the Ministry of Public Works
to hire me

for a position
with jurisdiction and control.

Because?

So that I could speak directly

about southern Colombia,

and, in particular,
on the Pasto-Mocoa road.

Capuchins built
the route for horses

in two years,

employing an average
of 1,400 workers per day.

In two years!

While this road,
a completely different route...

lasted for approximately
10 years...

before a truck
could travel over it.

If we analyze the characteristics
of the road geometry,

which includes
18 turns per kilometer,

it becomes even more obvious

that the only possible conclusion

is that this work was crazy.

It was an emotional
and political madness.

What happened to Mocoa?

And with Putumayo?

This dirt road was the only
communication between Pasto

and the national road system.

It was the umbilical cord.

What would have been
the best route for the road?

Without a doubt,

the horse trail
left by Capuchins,

which is what
is being built today.

The San Francisco-Mocoa road.

CONSTRUCTION OF THE SAN FRANCISCO-
MOCOA ROAD IS IN PROGRESS!

TOTAL INVESTMENT: US$ 116,000.

Are we there?

Yesterday, I told him
to have coffee, but he ran.

Really?

Yesterday, he was scared.

He made a fool of himself
so he could wake up late.

He came here and pretended
he was scared not to get scolded.

That's what you think, asshole.

Am I an asshole?

Did you hear what he said?

It will get wet there.

Not in this place.
Put next to the shovel.

It's good that this stone
is not hard.

Let's put this
a little further here.

We will use to fill here.

Having coffee again?

...the actual number
of deaths is not known,

but we managed to find
the bodies of 51 people.

- The bodies...
- Yes, the bodies.

All dismembered...

The whole situation was horrible.

It was raining a lot,

and, as we cleared the place,

the slide started to descend again
and covered us.

We are talking about
the natural disaster,

the massacre caused by
the terrible landslide of 1991,

26 years ago!

You said that even before that,

the San Francisco-Mocoa road
was already under discussion.

- Then we wasted 26 years, sir?
- Much more than that.

Many other disasters
have occurred as a result

of this neglect,
this abandonment by the state.

The "Springboard of Death"

it's the most dangerous road
in the world. That's true?

That's what they say.

This is not a road. Not at all.
It is a path.

It has a track
for both directions.

And the tragedies do not stop.

Buses fall, jeeps fall...

The tragedy will never end

until the San Francisco-Mocoa
road is built.

Well, the FARC
no longer exists,

paramilitary groups
no longer exist,

but Putumayo continues to suffer
from an even worse aggressor,

which is the
"Springboard of Death".

Who is responsible
for these deaths?

Exactly.
We asked truck drivers...

what they would consider
fair compensation

for the victims of this road.

They said: "Finish the
San Francisco-Mocoa road!"

That would be fair compensation
for the people of Putumayo and Nariño!

- Have a nice day.
- Goodbye.

When they started
talking about this road,

we were very happy.

My daughter was happy,
because my granddaughter,

who was 3 at the time,

could study in Mocoa
or San Francisco.

But time passed and
we only saw surveyors

and other people
coming here to drill,

other people looking
at tunnel construction...

The first route followed
that path, down there.

Now they say they are
going to build a tunnel here,

that would end
100 meters ahead.

Then they cleaned up
another section.

Then another surveyor came
and designed another route...

about 50 meters
above the first.

And the last route they planned,
almost a year ago,

passes about 100 meters
below our house,

where we see that field
over there.

I'm fighting not to
put the road there, because...

it will destroy my place.
I asked for it to be further down.

They say they’re going
to build big concrete walls,

about 30, 40 meters
down the road for horses.

At this rate,

I estimate it will take another
100 years to complete,

because there are
so many lies...

I've been here for 34 years,
and the outlook is not good.

Although the governor and the
others say it will be completed...

My granddaughter and I
will be underground

and nothing will have changed.

I don't believe the lies
of these bastards.

What homework do you have
for tomorrow?

Of English.

English? My goodness...

Thanks.

I'll fix your hair...
You don't have to take it apart.

I want to put it aside.

Good...

Let's start from here.

The Three Wise Men, right?

Didn't you forget
the Egyptian kings?

Esau, and who was the other?

That yellow part.

- Look how beautiful!
- I want to see.

That is the road!

See how beautiful!

I think that is a bridge.

It looks like a bridge.

What will it be?
"San Francisco, kilometer..."

It will be beautiful.

Look at that!
It looks like the roads of Manizales.

"Bridge 19"...

Where do you think it is?

It starts at kilometer 13,
plus 720...

Our fields are not like that.

It doesn't look like our region.

Look at these trees!

Where will this curve go?

Must be the famous viaducts!

DANGER
ROAD UNDER CONSTRUCTION

One, two, three,

four, five, six, seven...

Is good.

This is missing...
This is missing...

Two of these are missing,
and the number 30...

Three of number 30.

It can't be that much.

Let's interleave.
Then put it there...

When the others arrive,

have them assembled
and fixed here.

What?

Should have gone that way.

But it's here.

Right here.

What was the length?

Two at the back,

two and a half,
and then the rebars.

There must be five behind.
Five behind...

and place them closer
to the rebars.

We will have to get rid
of these vibrating scales.

It is not your fault.

There is no other way to do it.

Not much is left.

About a concrete bucket,

but the other mixer is here.
Did you see?

How much?

Place on Axis number 2...

Closer! To the number 2!

Number 2!

Bring it closer to the rebars.

Closer to the rebars!

Seven centimeters back.

Seven centimeters back!

No! Go back to the prism!
Go back to 35!

Go back to 35
and back to the prism!

Put on 35,
and go back to the prism.

When you read Putumayo's story,
it's very sad.

But if you dwell
on that sadness,

everything goes wrong.

From a technical point of view,
there are no limits.

Everything is possible.

But something
is not working right,

and this thing
ends up referring to ancestry,

because it passes
from generation to generation.

In the end,
they took everything away.

Most of us lost our jobs.
I mean, everyone.

They started by firing
10 people at a time.

There were no more guards.

They stopped working.

As people say,
money was thrown away,

because they never ended
the road.

Everything stopped,
the works in the ditches,

the workers' contract...

They say the money is gone.

They dismissed the workers,
suspended the works.

They even took the machines
away.

They didn't even leave
the trash behind.

They took everything away.

They padlocked the entrance so
that no one can access the bridge.

Two gates were placed.

I managed to open
one of the gates.

That way,
at least the people can come in

and admire the bridge,
right?

They can see the view.

Who's going to be dumb enough
to jump off the bridge?

A lot of people come here
on Saturdays and Sundays...

Let them access
the bridge for a walk!

ROAD CLOSED

On fourth generation roads,

the goal is to avoid turns.

But that doesn't make sense,
because they didn't even finish...

This is suicide.

This road goes up there...

Go around the mountain.

It doesn't matter
if your dad is in the picture!

You need to photograph
the bridge!

Like this.

You can see?

How beautiful all this green...

It is a great place
to do bungee jump.

- It's scary!
- I would jump.

Sure.

The Juanambú Bridge is higher,
and people jump from it.

- Seriously?
- Sure.

I hope they finish
building the road.

I hope for that.

Such an imposing bridge
to end up on the mountain!

Our teacher said
that when the bridge is finished,

the tunnel will begin.

From here on,
the terrain is very steep.

Come here, dear!

It's raining!
Let's go.

ROAD CLOSED

Will they ever finish this road
someday?

I may be dead
before they're done.

It's difficult.

They say it will be completed
in the next 10 years,

but until then,
I will be underground.

It won't do any good.

But life is like that.

MARCH 31, 2017

This is how things are.

Come in, Coqui.

Attention, Putumayo!

The Los Pinos stream
overflowed,

and houses are being flooded.

Residents are climbing
on the roofs.

Please help!

This is an appeal to the
relief agencies, to the mayor!

Everything is flooded!

Help! We need a helicopter!

ON THE NIGHT OF MARCH 31, 2017,
MOCOA WAS DESTROYED BY RAIN.

ROAD ENGINEER GUILLERMO
GUERRERO URRUTIA

IT WAS AMONG THE HUNDREDS
OF VICTIMS WHO DIED THAT NIGHT.

THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE
SAN FRANCISCO-MOCOA ROAD

WAS SUSPENDED
MONTHS BEFORE THIS TRAGEDY.

THE PEOPLE OF PUTUMAYO CONTINUE
USING THE "SPRINGBOARD OF DEATH",

IN OPERATION SINCE 1944.

DIRECTED BY

SCREENPLAY