More than a dramatic adventure story, Into the Amazon shines a light on two of the western hemisphere’s most formidable men, and the culture and politics of their two formidable nations – American president Theodore Roosevelt and legendary Brazilian explorer Cândido Rondon.
PBS sent a crew to the Brazilian Amazon to reconstruct this remarkable and yet relatively unknown expedition into the heart of the Soult America rainforest. The documentary, punctuated by comments and analysis premiered on this American TV network in January (2018) but it can be seen through streaming. The documentary tells the journey set out with twenty other adventurers in 1914, over eight eventful weeks in one of the most remote places on earth.
Hunger and exhaustion were compounded by the rainforest’s unforgiving topography, which forced the men to carry heavy canoes long distances. What was anticipated to be a relatively tranquil journey turned out to be a brutal test of courage and character; and before it was all over, one member of the expedition had drowned and another had committed murder. Roosevelt would badly injure his leg and beg to be left behind to die.
More than a dramatic adventure story, Into the Amazon shines a light on two of the western hemisphere’s most formidable men, and the culture and politics of their two formidable nations.