Cecilia, Elena, Dora, Lidia and Liita are Aymaras – an indigenous people who traditionally didn’t view mountain climbing as a suitable activity for women. The women work as cooks, primary school teachers, cleaning ladies and homemakers. In Bolivia they’re called “Cholitas.” Traditionally they wear bowler hats set at a slight angle and colorful, multi-layer skirts with white petticoats; their long, dark hair is usually braided into thick plaits. As women and indigenous people, they were long discriminated against, so many considered mountain climbing to be completely out of their reach. But then a group of five Cholitas joined forces to make their dreams of freedom and independence come true. They organized an expedition to Mount Aconcagua in Argentina. At over 6900 meters tall, it lives up to its name: the Colossus of America.
In this documentary, we accompany the Bolivian women on their adventure, and share in their dreams and fears. Revealing their trials and their tenacity, the Cholitas show how scaling the summit fills them with a sense of freedom, happiness and pride.
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