Living in a Perfect World

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Living in a Perfect World
Directed by Diego D'Innocenzo, Marco Leopardi
Produced by L'Immagine sas (Rome, Italy)
Written by Roberta Cortella
Music by Roberto Gori, Edoardo Bignozzi
Distributed by National Geographic Channel International (Washington, USA)
Release dates
2006
Running time
1 h 10 mn
Country Mexico, Italy, United States
Language English, Spanish, Plautdietsch

Living in a Perfect World is a 2006 feature-length documentary film by National Geographic Channel International (NGCI) about the German-speaking Mennonites between Chihuahua Desert and the Bolivian forest.

The dialogue in the documentary is in Spanish and Plautdietsch with English and other subtitles.

Living in a Perfect World was awarded as Best Documentary of the BigScreen Festival in 2007.[1]

Synopsis[edit]

The documentary tells the stories of four traditional Mennonites (Aganetha, Cornelio, Pedro and Jacobo) living in two different communities. The colonies of El Sabinal and El Capulin are settled in the Mexican state of Chihuahua and look like typical communities of conservative so-called "Russian" Mennonites, who formed as an ethnic group in southern Russia, but who are of Dutch and German ancestry and language. These German-speaking Mennonites have a long history of migrations, beginning in the Netherlands, where the group originated, to the then mostly German-speaking area around Danzig (see also: Vistula delta Mennonites) and from there to Russia (see also: Chortitza Colony and Molotschna Colony, then to Canada and from there to Mexico in search of a place where they can freely practice their religion and speak Plautdietsch, an East Low German dialect of the German language. The four protagonists are longing for their perfect world in balance between tradition and modernity: The colony of El Sabinal lives in isolation and rejects any modern technology, whereas the colony of El Capulin begins to accept innovations such as electricity and cars. The more orthodox members of the community will migrate to the Bolivian rainforest.

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