Africa Trek

On January the first, 2001, Sonia and Alexandre set off with a small digital camera, the sole directors of their odyssey, from the Cape of Good Hope, at the southernmost tip of Africa, to their final destination : The Sea of Galilea. Their outlandish plan consisted of crossing the entire continent exclusively on foot, following along the great fracture of the Rift Valley. On the itinerary of this unparalleled trek : South Africa, Lesotho, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Malawi, Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia, Sudan, Egypt, and Israel.

For three years and three months, almost 1200 days, Alex and Sonia experienced terrible hardships : fatigue, extreme thirst and blazing sun, torrential downpours, tsetse flies, ferocious beasts, hyenas prowling around their tent at night, man-eating lions, malaria and raging fevers etc… But they also discovered an incredibly generous Africa. They were welcomed by hundreds of families, and for a few hours or days, partook of these people’s joys and sufferings : an evening in the South African townships, a communal meal in the mountains of Lesotho, a ritual dance with the Barbaïgs, a night of song with the Turkanas, an initiation ceremony with the Hamers, ten days with a caravan of camels crossing the Sahara from Darfour to Egypt on an ancient route…

Africa Trek symbol

Let’s take part in Sonia and Alexandre Poussin’s passion, and discover Africa with a human approach, down to earth, into the heart of its invaluable peoples and nature.

Sonia and Alexandre breathe new life into the noble genre of travel journal. In doing so, they follow in the footsteps of such illustrious precursors as Stevenson or Nicolas Bouvier, these solitary travelers who scribble in their weather beaten journals, astride the intimate and adventure in the far reaches of the world.

Africa Trek recounts an endeavor much greater than the physical and moral feat. This is a tale of a unique reunion between a couple in love and time. The rediscovered time of trekking, and Africa’s time, so different from our own – a time they were wise to approach in this way, with their feet and hearts. And it is a tale of the heart and courage it took them throughout their journey from south to north along the spine of the dark continent, through the cradle of mankind, in search of the mystery that made us what we are today.

The Poussins are definitely not pointless adventurers. They chose to give meaning to their life by crossing a continent whose human richness is caricatured all too frequently. They don’t offer us a slick and polished view. Theirs is the tale of an apparently crazy though extraordinary attempt to approach the other : He or she we do not know, and whom we stumble upon by chance, like an unexpected gift.

Besides images and encounters, they also offer their voice – at times weary but always determined. A voice which enables us to hear the particular sound human make when they walk, when they believe in the richness of the world and in their courage.

These are vibrant and energetic films, and yet they also celebrate a slowness that prompts us to rediscover the world. Is this not what documentary is all about ? To offer a fresh look at what we think we already know but have often merely glimpsed through the window of the small screen ?

It undoubtedly took a bit of madness to head off like this, a stroke of bravado as well, but most of all zeal : a desire that reminds us the paths taken by those capable of heeding the call of the world and their passions. Nothing of grand scope can be accomplished without this.

en/africa_trek.txt · Dernière modification: 07/04/2006 19:50