Vanishing Sail (2015) Poster

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Often intimate and moving tale of honest and simple island life
raylinnington14 September 2015
Often intimate and moving tale of honest and simple island life . Held together by traditions continually under threat as but always Hope on the horizon . Beautifully filmed and movingly narrated by the film maker . This is a truly heartfelt story that should move all but the cynical . Shows an often unrecorded village life in the holiday playground of the Caribbean . A backwater where life a float to fish or trade are the unavoidable essentials of daily life . No where on the planet is the lot of the fisherman an easy one but he depends in turn on the boat builder . He remains at the heart of many coastal villages supplying those simple graceful craft . A great film that will find a space in your heart with a glimpse into the other lives that just go on getting on against the odds and of course Mother Nature at her most destructive . It deserves more exposure .
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Wooden boatbuilding - Caribbean culture - a beautiful film - now on DVD!!
pol-8757526 October 2017
Worried that it might be his last, a one man band boatbuilding operation brings his whole family into building this beautiful sailing boat. This gorgeous film is made by a few who really know and understand the people and the place - and of course the boats and their importance to life to this Caribbean island community. The soundtrack is of the sounds and voices of this quiet village and the exceptionally stirring music that rises from this part of the world. Completely amazing, and one to treasure on DVD.Vanishing Sail has won numerous awards internationally, and is part of a campaign to get people all over the world to value their local craft cultures and to recognise the importance of them in their lives. A film not to be missed!
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Enchanting and prideful
BigBsline23 June 2017
What a delightful film. Not only does it give a feel for what's involved in the proud art of Caribbean boat building but it does so tactfully and with the right dose of island humor.

The viewer gets to sample Caribbean life, along with the frustrations and challenges of small-island resources.

It is enticing and thoroughly educational. Anybody who loves the pleasure of sailing and the spirit of the sea will certainly enjoy "Vanishing Sail."
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An enchanting piece of storytelling packed with characters you want to spend time with.
amacgillivray7 January 2017
I went to see the UK premier of Vanishing Sail in Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis and absolutely loved it! The connection with the Hebrides being that many of the first boat-builders on the island where Vanishing Sail was filmed, Carriacou, came from Scotland, and also that for generations, both Windward Islanders and Hebrideans have looked to the surrounding seas, and to boats, for their livelihoods. This is the story of vanishing skills, shifting family dynamics, the aspirations of young men growing up on a small island and their natural desire to look outwards, a vibrant community, and the dogged determination of one man - Alwyn Enoe - risking everything to build one last boat. It's an enchanting piece of storytelling packed with characters you want to spend time with: beautifully shot, engaging, moving, funny and exciting. I hope it goes on to connect with audiences everywhere. It certainly deserves to.
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Boat Building - Sea - Emotional - beautiful story.
MohdAlRahbi6 April 2019
I enjoyed watching Vanishing Sail just now via Vimeo on Apple TV, I must say that this is one of the most beautiful Films in Sailing/Maritime/Sea/Emotional/Family categories I have watched in a long time.

It captured the Boat/Yacht building heritage, craftsmanship and human emotions and their links with the traditions and sea.

I'm waiting to own it on DVD and iTunes.
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Vanishing Sail
aurora-herrera30 November 2016
Warning: Spoilers
"Life is too short for instant coffee and Rice Krispies." – John Smith, Vanishing Sail.

This is my favourite line from the film.

Indeed Vanishing Sail is a film about the traditions of boat-building in the Grenadines but by emphasizing this part of John Smith's interview, director Alexis Andrews is pushing the audience to dig deeper, to size up the routines of instant gratification in their own lives and to do the work needed to experience a deeper sagacity of life.

The film focuses on Alwyn Enoe, one of the last boat-builders of Carriacou who practises the trade passed down the generations from the Scottish settlers who arrived in the 19th century. At one point, these traditions of boat-building were crucial to the survival of the islanders. However, with the younger generation now interested in other pursuits, these skills have all but vanished. Approaching his 70s, Alwyn decides to create a final sailing vessel before the skills introduced by his ancestors are lost forever.

Through mapping the creation of this vessel, Andrews gifts the audience the ability to witness the miracle of creation.

From the cutting of the trees that form the skeletal bones of the boat to the addition of reinforcing sinews of planking to fortifying joints of screws, nails and caulking to the fleshy materialization of sandpapered and painted decks, a masterful mast and swift sails, Andrews connects the audience to the three year journey to birth the Exodus.

"The film itself took three years, to build Alwyn's vessel," he said. "During that time I sailed up and down the Caribbean and looking for stories, for people who had a connection with boat building and I thought it would be maybe 10 people that I find with interesting stories and during the course of my travelling up and down, I did 49 interviews. We have 180 hours of footage. So then it took another two years to refine the story and a lot of people, when they heard the project was in development, began to get in touch with us and they wanted to submit photographs or pieces of music or old footage which was wonderful because it all helped to tell a wider story."

The film features several voices that have all been a part of the salt life, working on boats in varying capacities as well as a cultural scholar and storyteller from the community who give life to the history of boat-building and sailing, recounting their memories with charisma and the emotion of genuine nostalgia.

Andrews was born in Greece and studied photography in London before moving to Antigua in 1985 to work as a commercial photographer in the yachting industry.

Combined with his natural eye for framing, creativity and composition, Andrews' natural love for boat-building, sailing, as well as his respect for Alwyn, gives the film a beautiful buoyancy. Andrews lived in Antigua since 1895 and has been visiting Carriacou for over a decade, during which time he was able to build a boat with Alwyn, the Genesis.

I suspect that it is because of this true experience of the island, the people and the boats that Andrews' portrayal of the life there feels authentic and intimate. Moreover, because he is invested in the story, he gets the audience the audience to invest in the story. I felt like I was right there with Alwyn and his sons all the way through. I mean, they made a sail boat, from scratch with their bare hands. That is completely beautiful and remarkable. I marvelled at the latitude of work and felt utterly impatient to see the vessel in the water. On the launch day, as they were rolling the boat down to the shoreline, I realized I was holding my breath and only when it hit the water did I breathe a sigh of relief, happiness, pride and exultation.

The film ends with a few frames of text explaining that the family was commissioned to build another boat. Even though Alwyn has retired, the last frame captures one of Alwyn's sons walking with his own son and the audience can hope that the tradition will live on.
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