Exclusive interviews: Duncan Jones (Director of Moon) - Andrew Barker (Director of Straw Man) - Tony Grisoni (Screen Writer of Red Riding Trilogy, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas) - Michael Marshall Smith (author of Spares, Only Forward, The Straw Men etc) - Alejandro Adams (Director of Canary) - Ryan Denmark (Director of Romeo & Juliet vs The Living Dead) - Neal Asher (author of the Cormac series, The Skinner etc) - Marc Robert & Will Stotler (Able) - Kenny Carpenter (Director of Salvaging Outer Space)

Press Conference - Public Enemies - Johnny Depp, Michael Mann, Marion Cotillard


FEATURED REVIEWS - Public Enemies - Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen - Moon - The Hurt Locker

LFF is on Facebook - Twitter - Friend Feed

Wednesday, 21 January 2009

Big River Man - Documentary about a man swimming the Amazon...as you do!

Big River Man, a world cinema documentary film, takes viewers on the swim of a lifetime. Endurance swimmer Martin Strel is a Slovenian who has conquered most of the world's greatest rivers -- the Mississippi, the Danube and the Yangtze -- thus far. Strel has chosen the Amazon as his final conquest intent on bringing attention to protecting the rainforest to give credence to his journey.

But make no mistake, Strel is no Michael Phelps. He's 50, he's overweight not the guy you want to see in a wetsuit, but he is bent of taking the best rivers of the world, bringing a message of environmentalism along with him. Fortified with a solid two bottles of wine a day and an iron mindset, Strel has swum his way into the books as the "greatest endurance swimmer in history."

In his past travels, Strel has encountered all sorts of evils of the world, from pollution to rough waters and some rather unfriendly underwater creatures. In this film, Strel has many more adventures. He meets many native peoples, takes in the beauty of the rainforest and endures many tough situations. From preexisting health issues to stomach problems to eventual delirium, Strel's journey is always an exciting one.

Strel's son is in the film as a narrator, offers insight into the man behind the amazing feat and shows the struggles he has keeping his father together.

"Big River Man" was directed by John Maringouin, but it was his wife, Molly Lynch, who had the initial vision. Lynch became pregnant midway through the project and couldn't travel to the Amazon with an infant, but still had her hand in all parts of the film.

Maringouin said he was inspired by Strel's dedication, but it wasn't until Sundance that he realized his true love of the earth.

"I was moved by what he was saying about the rainforest," Maringouin said.

"Big River Man" was created to be more than just a sports film or an environmental film but to capture the emotional enormity of Strel's accomplishments.

"I'm not looking for a message," Maringouin said. "It's interwoven into what he goes through."

Strel finishes the swim worn out and delirious from the enormity of the task and quickly fades into the background, never getting much attention for his accomplishments.

Strel came to Park City this week to attend the screening of the film. After one showing he spoke if his love of sport and the environment.

"This is prize not just for me," he said in a thick Slovenian accent. "It's for people who love sport and love the nature. We need this interest. We need the rainforest. I hope I change this world just a little bit."

Source: Park Record

Home / Forum / Guestbook