Ferney, Jorge, Marrero and other horsemen like them set out for 40 days of round-ups, branding and selling of thousands of head of cattle. But with each successive roundup there are fewer animals, and fewer men dedicated to the task. Highways now cross the once flat, wide-open space, and new owners put the land to new use, interpreting its riches in a different way. Former llaneros Campero and Pimpo now share a camp with men from other parts of the country, all looking for the highly prized “black gold”.
The arrival of oil, along with the boom of monocrops like African palm and the new urban lifestyles, have brought new jobs and better living conditions, but require a change from hat to helmet, horse to motorcycle, stables to tents, and plains to town living. The 400-year-old relationship that gave rise to a society in which man, horse and savannah were one has slowly been altered.
This documentary records a landscape reminiscent of the setting in an old western and features some 40 men and thousands of head of cattle in an event that is not to be missed, confirming the existence, even in the 21st century, of lifestyles still capable of defying Western society’s capacity for wonder. The situation in which the modern-day llaneros currently find themselves is directly related to the imminent transformation of our roots.
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