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Down to Be Up

7 min / documentary / 2012 / USA

filmmaker: Victoria Rondón and Steven Vega



An uplifting and courageous glimpse into a young woman with Down syndrome and her daily struggles. Exploring simple complexities of the everyday, María Barbara takes us into the deep recesses of her heart, finding meaning in what most of us take for granted.Focusing her energy on bettering herself to help those around her, she motivates an empowering and self-reflecting guide to life.

Filmed by her younger sister, Victoria Rondón and co-directed by Steven Vega, María’s views are expressed through a juxtaposition of surreal imagery and mythical sound. Struggling with a speech impediment, the film allows María to share her fears and inner triumphs through a poetic narrative. Her words remind us that despite differences we all have a responsibility to consistently strive to better ourselves. María Barbara demonstrates that we are truly never too down to be up.

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