“Above the alley, beneath the sky” (USA)

Bulgarian premiere of the film  “Above the alley, beneath the sky” (USA, Brazil, 2014, Dominic Gil, 24’)

Above the Alley, Beneath the Sky follows climbing instructor Andrew Lenz in his quest to build a youth outreach climbing program in Brazil’s largest slum. Centro de Escalada Urbana sprung out of the concept that some of the worlds finest rock climbing was literally on the backdoor step of this under-served community. Every Monday the kids venture out onto the cliffs above their favela. During the climb, they are able to stare down upon a community famous for drugs and gang activity.

As Andrew works to implement the program we meet the various youths he’s working with, including 2 young boys who have completed the advanced training program. Jonas and Patrick have been climbing with C.E.U. for over year and are ready to face bigger and better challenges. In the film they attempt their first ascent of a route known as Baden Powel, which was a historically important route amongst locals until it fell into disuse during the heightened drug and gang violence which pervaded Rochina for decades. Now the route, open again for climbers, will be attempted by two of the communities very own.

By tracing the lives of Rio’s children from their homes to the rocks high above the sprawling favela’s, this short documentary gets under the skin of a much loved and feared country. It also will introduces the adventure world to a new sort of climbing film, one centered around new beginnings both on the wall itself and in the minds and hearts of the kids striving to understand achievement and how it can make a difference in their life.

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