GENRE: Documentary
RELEASE DATE: April 6, 2017
DIRECTOR: Sonia Fritz
PRODUCER(S): Sonia Fritz, Anabelle Mullen
MOVIE SYNOPSIS: Mona is a beautiful, distant, mythic and mysterious island, full of amazing caves and interesting legends. Above all it is our Caribbean treasure. A completely flat island that emerged from the bottom of the sea thousands of years ago, it was a ceremonial center for the Taínos, the original inhabitants, who practiced their rituals in its amazing and diverse caves. In Mona’s caves, they created pictograms: faces, bodies with frog legs or bat wings, among other representations, which are still preserved, thanks to the inaccessibility of the island. With the Spanish arrival and later, with the subsequent influx of pirates, ships anchored at Mona to stock up on food and water, provided by the Taínos. Between the 19th and 20th century, more than 600 men extracted guano, a fertilizer, which was highly appreciated worldwide. Presently Mona Island is a natural reserve managed by the Department of Natural Resources and the Environment. Biologists research and preserve hawksbill turtles, iguanas that are endemic to Mona as well as other animals. Once a year the “cobada” is a unique spectacle of seashells that slowly get to the shores from the “meseta” and for one night without moon, they mate and then go back to the “meseta”. For the past 10 years, an interdisciplinary and multi-institutional project called “El corazón del Caribe” [The Heart of the Caribbean] has brought together world-renowned speleologists, British and Puerto Rican archaeologists, and graduate students from the Center for Advances Studies of Puerto Rico and the Caribbean to explore and find new meanings to the Taíno legacy. So far, they have mapped over 200 caves on the island. This feature documentary will help us promote awareness and educate others about the rich history of Mona and the spectacular fauna that inhabits it.