In the Pit


A Mexican legend recounts that for every bridge being built the devil asks for one soul, so that the bridge never falls. This film tells the story of the workers who are participating in the construction of a second deck to Mexico City’s inner Periférico freeway. It is the story of those whose hands and sweat go into the making of this mammoth work of concrete. The workers’ daily lives, their hopes, their dreams, and their dignity for survival. Contrasts, emotions, and small moments that shall be taken by the devil, but that will remain in the memory of those who get to know the workers.

I like to search where no one else would think to look. However, sometimes I don’t know how to look because I don’t know how to see. I enjoy going unnoticed. When I am unseen, I see best.

CHAVELO: The crane operator’s assistant. The one who never stops. He’s always filthy. Prudent and responsible, he is a man of few words.

EL GRANDE: The mason. He’s always fixing other people’s mistakes. Very talkative. Among his favorite subjects of conversation are his mother and his wife, who no longer loves him.

EL GUAPO: The romantic. An expert in tensing iron cables. Shy, soft-spoken, and reserved, he nonetheless is open about his longing for love, although he says he has no time for it.

VICENCIO: The boss of the ironworkers. He races horses bareback, but up until now he hasn’t won. He looks directly at the camera with a gallant pose.

PEDRO: The ironworker. Aggressive and loud, yet aloof. He is forever spewing out swear words and catcalls, but also melodies, which he sings while working. You can never be sure if he’s telling the truth.

This documentary material, digital video filmed all along the year of the construction, will be inter-cut by photo animation of the construction and workers, and with time lapses filmed in 35mm. The music, composed of sounds from the construction, will help to create a sound atmosphere where the metals, the sirens of the cranes, the jackhammers, the handsaws on the wood, the voices of the workers, and the songs reflect the drama of this world, so intense and vital, which is finally a reflection of a culture.


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