HERDERS follows five herders and their families in Uganda, Tibet, Germany, Chile and India throughout the seasons. For months they trek through changing landscapes with their herds, living only from what nature provides. It is a life far from the romantic picture we have, a life under harsh conditions, in direct contact with nature and its extreme elements – birth, death, storm and sun, rain and drought are fundamental parts of their lives. HERDERS tells the story of their struggles for survival. Their animals are partners, even friends – as Elizabeth Katushabe puts it: “Since we love our animals very much, they in turn love us…”.
HERDERS uses the natural cycle of a year as chronological structure to portrait the people, the animals and the landscape they are living in. The passing of the seasons is the inherent rhythm of this form of life – a recurring circle of life, birth and death. Told in parallel stories, through pure and precise observation and by listening to the thoughts of the herders, little by little, person by person, the visually and emotionally stunning story evolves. HERDERS is a homage to a vanishing archaic culture.
Jürgen Kleinig, Neue Celluloid Fabrik