Director: Martin Duckworth
About the Film
Martin Duckworth's The Furthest Possible Place pays homage to the dynamic
spirit of a modern Bolivian political refugee living in Montreal. Ana
Maria Seifert was only 6 years old when her businessman father was put
on the wanted list by Bolivia's new political regime and forced underground.
Years later, Ana Maria went to medical school and was inspired by Maurice
Lefebvre, an Oblate missionary from Quebec, who headed the sociology department
at the University of LaPaz. In 1971, Lefebvre was killed in a bloody coup
d'etat and many students were imprisoned, including Ana Maria. She was
released in 1973 on condition that she go to "the furthest possible
place." She headed to Montreal, joining the thousands of other Latin
Americans looking for safety in that province during the 1970s.
While scratching out a living through menial work and raising a family
in Quebec, Ana Maria studied biology at night. Finally graduating, she
became a researcher in industrial health and a determined advocate for
the work safety of low-wage earners, particularly other immigrant women.
Filmmaker Martin Duckworth aims his camera at the heart of this modern
refugee experience, celebrating the warmth of friendship, commitment to
family and the lingering pain of social dislocation. Juxtaposing footage
of Bolivia's coup with life in Montreal, we glimpse the shocking reasons
behind political exile, and the courage and determination that one woman
brings to making her new home a better place for all.