ESCAPE TO COSTA RICA (2018) – A Trilogy of Documentaries (3x 52 minutes)

Living traditions and unusually close, even intimate connections between man and nature. These are the central themes of the three-part documentary series Escape to Costa Rica, the next in the highly-successful Escape to Nature series created by Petra Dolezalova and Libor Spacek.

1. CONNECTED WITH THE EARTH – Evidence of human existence in Costa Rica dates back over 10,000 years. The Bribri tribe was the first to inhabit what is today Costa Rica. Their efforts to maintain their original language, traditions, and independence firmly connected with a fully self-sufficient life in the jungle are truly exceptional. Their social system is also notable, with a matriarchy playing a pivotal role as well as interest in the wisdom of nature, which they’ve brought into their everyday lives. The natural respect that the Bribri has for nature was even been adopted by foreigners who settled permanently in Costa Rica, and whose stories also makeup part of this documentary. Nature itself overpowered them, and they learned to listen, understand, and perceive it naturally. It subconsciously acts as a guide to everyone on how to treat our home, to ensure that its life is not snuffed out.

2. JUNGLE STORY – The Costa Rica jungle is home to over half a million species. It hides unseen mysteries of life, only a fraction of which have ever been discovered by humans. Most of the creatures that the creators captured during their journey display exceptional abilities – basilisks that can run across the surface of the water, frogs that change into leaves, sloths that live largely upside-down, and Atta leafcutter ants, whose antibiotic production would be the envy of any pharmaceutical giant. Equally worthy of attention are the feathered denizens of the jungle, such as toucans and tanagers, and macaws, which Project Ara works tirelessly to rescue and use to repopulate their territory. Costa Ricans are well aware of their extraordinary natural wealth, and they protect their treasure with an exceptional range of national parks and protected areas. The jungle can, however, be dangerous. It’s a test for anybody who wishes to explore it – the jungle will try their determination, courage, and ability to observe, listen, and blend in. The reward is an unexpected self-knowledge.

3. THE CALL OF THE OCEAN – Costa Rica’s coastline and the sea that bathes it are as sought after as the unbounded nature inland. Local beaches are attractive for their natural beauty, as well as for the miracle of creation. Despite constant threats of danger, female olive ridley sea turtles return here year after year to lay their eggs…and the baby turtles make their way to the sea to test the strength of the Pacific Ocean currents. Only one in a thousand survives… Evidence of Mother Nature’s – or in this case, the god Siba’s – boundless fantasies is the Osa peninsula, captured in the third part of the documentary film series. Long ago it was an island, and it seems as if the virgin rainforest grows directly from the ebb and flow of the tide… The exceptional number of local ecosystems makes it possible for new plant and animal species to continue to emerge even today, some of which exist nowhere else on Earth. A similar variety and diversity can be seen under the water’s surface. The fascinating scenery is enhanced by the protracted singing of humpback whales, whose songs last up to 30 minutes during courtship and mating. Singing humpback whales can be heard underwater over 40 kilometers away, but to catch a glimpse of them isn’t quite as easy.

  • Producer: Escape to Nature
  • Co-Producer: Czech Television
  • Music: Varhan Orchestrovic Bauer
  • Sound: Jiri Klenka, Vladka Cafourkova
  • Editor: Vilem Srail
  • Director of Photography: Libor Spacek
  • Cameramen: Libor Spacek, Tomas Dolezal, Jakub Simunek, Miloslav Mejla Dolezal
  • Photographer: Petra Dolezalova a Libor Spacek
  • Commentary: Petra Dolezalova
  • Narrator: Robert Polo
  • Director: Libor Spacek

Expert Consultant: Jiri Valsuba
Experienced Guides: Michal Kopriva, Abel Bustamante Cerdas, Keysh Mayorga