On the outskirts of Rio de Janiro is Jardim Gramacho, the world's largest landfill, where men and women sift through garbage for a living. Artist Vik Muniz produces portraits of the workers and learns about their lives.
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An uplifting feature documentary highlighting the transformative power of art and the beauty of the human spirit. Top-selling contemporary artist Vik Muniz takes us on an emotional journey from Jardim Gramacho, the world's largest landfill on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro, to the heights of international art stardom. Vik collaborates with the brilliant catadores, pickers of recyclable materials, true Shakespearean characters who live and work in the garbage quoting Machiavelli and showing us how to recycle ourselves. Written by
[after Tiao's portrait sells for $50,000 at Sotheby's]
The most important thing is what you're going to do with this.
It was all worth it. Everything I did up until now was really worth it.
Why do you think you are here?
Because once a friend and I had a dream of creating an association. We created the association. It was a crazy dream. Nobody believed in us. Not even my family. Nobody believed in me.
This is only the beginning, Tiao. This is only the beginning.
I am so happy. God was ...
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The Brazilian artist Vik Muniz rooted in New York decides to make the difference and travels to Jardim Gramacho, the largest landfill of the world in the outskirt of Rio de Janeiro, with the intention to help the pickers to improve their lives using his art. Vik recalls an event when he was very poor and lived in Brazil. He tried to break up a fight between two men, and he was shot when he was walking to his car. Later the shooter gave him some money that allowed Vik to travel to USA.
Vik and his friend Fábio spend two years in Jardim Gramacho and get closer to a group of pickers of recyclable materials and takes pictures of them. He uses his talent to make art using recyclable material and photographs the results. Then he travels to London and sells one of the portraits in an auction. With the money, the pickers buy a truck, equipment and build a leaning center and a library. The pickers that worked with him leans how to improve their lives and leave Jardim Gramacho.
"Waste Land" is a must see uplifting documentary that shows another side of Rio de Janeiro unusual in the cinema: the lives of people that earn their lives honestly working in the greatest landfill of the world and how they could improve their lives with social investment.
Vik Muniz gives a lesson to our corrupt politicians that embezzle money that are dedicated to people of the lower classes and shows how it is possible to improve lives using the money properly. His humanitarian work should be publicized worldwide and specially in my country. Maybe in the future, the president and politicians would be outraged not with handcuffed corrupts but with the damage that corruption causes to our people. My vote is nine.
Title (Brazil): "Lixo Extraordinário" ("Extraordinary Garbage")
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