“Geedka Nolosha” or “Tree of Life” a brilliant Somalian short film directed by Abdulkadir Ahmed Said.
It shows a typical Somalian village with people going about their lives, women pounding the corn husks, gathering water from the river, children playing, cattle and fowl roaming about and a single nomad walking purposefully.
He goes deep into the forest and selects a good hardy tree to cut, obviously for the firewood for his village. He starts cutting, suddenly the birds and animals perk up, children look from their games, people stop to wonder what’s going on, the noise is reverberating throughout the village.
Then he finally brings the tree down, the animals scurry about fearfully, birds screech and fly up angrily into the air, people run about in fear, there is thunder and heavy rain follows.
Next shot is of the nomad in a desert – there is no vegetation, no forests, no plant life, no animals, no humans – its full of bleak and harsh desert. Interspersed are shots of heavy machinery cutting down huge trees with impunity.
Creator Series film no. 5, Markella Mildenberger is coming off a major injury that has sidelined her for almost 8 years and she has been recommended biking to rescue her body and rehabilitate. She pushes her limits by taking part in a multi day stage biking race in B.C. There is not much of riding footage here as in the other movies, but certainly a lot of inspirational moments for any sportsperson out there. There is a narrative, so that’s very good. The direction, camera work, and everything else is spectacular. Doing a multi day stage bike racing in the mountains as a first time mountain biking experience is certainly something that requires lot of courage and determination. Markella excels in that she completes every day strongly.
4th film in the series Creator Series of mountain biking short films, this time it is from Bali, Indonesia. Professional MTB rider Keegan Wright embarks on the journey equipped with some local cash to purchase supplies etc. survive on his own. He goes through absolutely breathtaking forests, some rice terraces, agricultural farms, black lava. The scenery, camera work, photography, cinematography, music are all totally magnificent.
These are all the kind of out of box thinking that propels a country’s image to the world – progressive, positive, vibrant.
This is another of the Creator Series short films on mountain biking. This one from Darrington, Washington which is surrounded by the Cascade Mountains. The community had a tragedy in 2014 when a mud slide destroyed 49 homes killing 43 people in its wake. That’s when the mayor and other community leaders embarked on a program to rebuild the community spirit and mountain biking was seen as one such option. They had beautiful forests nearby so that proved beneficial to them. They had bought in experts to make a proper track, a mountain biking track in the mountains, by removing the roots, stones etc. and creating a kind of a nice zigzag pathway for mountain bikers.
That is something which we in India should try to emulate. We have ample mountains and forests. All we need to do is to create an ecosystem of people friendly activities in the forests be it mountain biking, or hiking, trekking, studying plants, insects etc. so that people connect with nature and learn to respect the mountains. Sadly lacking in India.
These are Creator Series short movies, 10 in all, for filmmakers, to tell bike related stories. Stories that might be overlooked because they didn’t fit into a certain mold.
This one, My Last Day of Summer is the third one in the series. Julia, a young girl, a bike enthusiast takes her bike to the repair shop for some slight repairs. She has to wait for a while, because the shop is closed. The owner comes and says we can’t promise, we are full up today, but he will try he says. Julia sits down to read a comic book, that has a kid riding a bike in a forest. She imagines herself in that situations amidst the ups and downs of the forest path, amidst the tall trees and the sounds of the birds and insects of the forest. Soon she gets her bike back and goes into the forest.
Its a short movie of about 8 minutes, but beautifully made, super creative shots of the kid riding the bike in the forest.
The other short movies of the series can be found here