GOSHEN is a powerful award winning documentary depicting the diet and active lifestyle of the indigenous Tarahumara, a light-footed running tribe, who are striving to maintain their ancient culture against all odds. The Tarahumara are renowned for their incredible long distance running endurance and prevention of modern chronic diseases. For centuries, the Tarahumara have found a safe place of refuge in the remote regions of the Copper Canyons and Sierra Madre mountains in Chihuahua, Mexico. Recently, drought and famine have threatened the Tarahumara’s ability to sustain their ancient cultural traditions. GOSHEN takes you on a journey in the huarache-clad footsteps of these endurance athletes, highlighting the health benefits of safeguarding their way of life. Engaging and entertaining, GOSHEN will inspire you to take part in preserving the native seeds and running traditions of the Tarahumara.

  • Dana Richardson
  • Sarah Zentz
  • Dana Richardson
  • Sarah Zentz
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Feature
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 25 minutes 10 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    April 4, 2015
  • Production Budget:
    30,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    Mexico, United States
  • Language:
    English, Spanish
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Santa Cruz Film Festival
    Santa Cruz, CA
    United States
    October 3, 2018
    Official Selection, Award Winner; Best Locally Produced Work
  • Mexico International Film Festival

    Golden Palm Award for Documentary Feature
  • San Luis Obispo International Film Festival
    San Luis Obispo, CA
    March 11, 2015
    North American Premiere
    Official Selection
  • Mountain Film Festival
    Mammoth, California
    United States
    April 30, 2016
    Best Environmental Feature
  • Las Vegas Running Film Festival
    Las Vegas, NV
    United States
    November 10, 2018
    Best Documentary
  • Native Spirit Festival
    United Kingdom
    October 17, 2015
    Official Selection
  • Monarch Film Festival
    Pacific Grove
    United States
    December 8, 2018
    Official Selection
  • Green Unplugged Film Festival
    Official Selection
  • International Independent Film Awards

    Gold Award for Documentary Feature
  • Prestige Film Awards

    Award Winner; Women Filmmakers
  • The IndieFEST Film Awards

    Award of Merit
  • Accolade Global Film Competition

    Award of Merit
  • University of El Paso Centennial Museum
    El Paso, Texas
    United States
    April 6, 2016
  • Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center
    El Paso, Texas
    United States
    October 18, 2018
  • Brandeis University
    Waltham, Massachusetts
    United States
    April 29, 2017
  • Madison Public Library
    Madison, Wisconsin
    United States
    March 3, 2017
  • Northville District Library
    Northville, MI
    United States
    October 28, 2016
  • Forest Theater
    Carmel-by-the-Sea, California
    United States
    June 10, 2016
Distribution Information
  • FNX
    Rights: Free TV
  • PBS
    Rights: Free TV
  • Amazon Video
    Country: Worldwide
    Rights: Video on Demand
  • FMTV
    Country: Worldwide
    Rights: Paid TV
  • Steep Edge
    Country: United Kingdom
    Rights: Paid TV
  • Telus
    Country: Canada
    Rights: Paid TV
  • Grind TV
    Country: United States
    Rights: Paid TV
  • Eco Streamz
    Rights: Video on Demand
  • Tubi
    Rights: Video on Demand
  • Xumo
    Rights: Video on Demand
  • GuideDoc
    Rights: Video on Demand
Director Biography - Dana Richardson, Sarah Zentz

DANA & SARAH FILMS is a documentary film production company based in Santa Cruz, California. Founders, Dana Richardson & Sarah Zentz, are the Producers and Directors of three award winning documentaries.

GOSHEN (2015) is a powerful documentary depicting the diet and active lifestyle of the indigenous Tarahumara, a light-footed running tribe who are striving to maintain their ancient culture. The film premiered at the San Luis Obispo International Film Festival, has won 6 prestigious awards, and is currently airing on PBS nationwide. The Smithsonian Institution added the documentary to their permanent Film & Media Collection. The New York Times also has highlighted the film on Times Video. The documentary has been picked up by several On Demand channels including Telus, Steep Edge TV, Grind TV, FMTV, Eco Streamz, and Amazon Video. The film received critical acclaim in the top running magazines including Competitor, Trail Runner, Women's Running, Ultra Running, Canadian Running, and Blue Ridge Outdoors.

BACK TO EDEN (2011) tells the story of Paul Gautschi, the founder of the Back To Eden Gardening movement. The film immediately went viral and has garnered over 50 million views in 225 countries. The film has been broadcast on Amazing Discoveries TV, CNL TV, TV7, Hope Channel, and Capetown TV. The film was an award winner in the International Green Unplugged Film Festival, was an official selection in The Awareness Film Festival, and continues to receive critical-acclaim globally. 

RADICAL JEWELRY MAKEOVER (2009) follows an international jewelry mining and recycling project. The short film premiered at the Museum of Arts and Design in NYC and continues to be screened at universities around the world.

Dana received her BFA in Video from School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2008. Dana is a professional cinematographer, director of photography, color corrector, and editor.

Sarah received her BFA in New Media from Millersville University, PA in 2008. In addition to recording and editing sound and filming, Sarah manages marketing, web design and graphic design for Dana & Sarah Films.

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Director Statement

In March 2013, we began production of our documentary film GOSHEN. The primary filming location was in the remote region of the Copper Canyons and Sierra Madre mountains in Chihuahua, Mexico. Due to the connection with a local medical pilot, we were able to access a Tarahumara community that had never been filmed before or seen a video camera for that matter. The first location we were flown to in the Copper Canyons was a small Tarahumara community called Rawarachi. The rugged mountain geography has kept them hidden and isolated from the outside world for many generations. The Tarahumara men and women were very photogenic, with dark sun bathed skin and shinny black hair that stood out vibrantly against their colorful clothing. Men and women of all ages curiously greeted us with a gentle touch of their fingers to the palms of our hands, accompanied by the softly spoken word “cuira” (pronounced kwee-da) meaning "hello" in Raramuri (their native language).

The first thing that broke the silent stares from the Tarahumara people was the laughter and intrigue evoked from the Vibram-five finger shoes on our feet! Some exclaimed that they thought our feet were painted, or that we looked like we were wearing gloves on our feet, or that we looked like monkeys! We always responded with equal interest in their huaraches (sandals) that all of the Tarahumara wore. They explained that their huaraches were made from rubber scraps they salvaged from automobile tires, which were held on with thick leather straps that wrapped up their ankles. The men, women, and children were able to walk and run extremely long distances in these minimal shoes or barefoot on the most treacherous terrain.

For the next few weeks we lived among this Tarahumara community in an adobe hut that the tribe had built. The lifestyle of this community is beyond rustic. There is no electricity, no toilets, no running water--their drinking water is found from small natural springs providing just enough water to survive--and they cooked all of their meals over fires and slept in adobe huts. Although this seemed despairing, these living conditions are the only way of life the people of Rawarachi have ever known... therefore they lived with a refreshing satisfaction of life.

When visiting their homes they always generously offered meals to us as their guests. Even though they often had very little food compared to what we are used to in our culture, they always shared it as though they had an abundance. We humbly accepted anything they offered from mouth watering corn tortillas, pinole, stews incorporating many variations of corn and beans, and of course the unforgettable ground nopales.

Not only did the community offer eating meals communally, but their agricultural system was also rather communal. The farmers explained their difficulty growing in certain fields over the last few years due to the devastation of drought and plagues of insects. They elaborated that because of the widespread, diverse, geography of their community certain fields were unaffected by these issues, while others were wiped out completely. Their ethical solution to a problem like this is for the farmers whose crops were successful to share their harvest and seed with those who did not have any harvest. This is a cultural practice of the Tarahumara known as "korima" which consists of sharing what you have with others--another beautiful example of how this community has self-sufficiently survived under such harsh growing and living conditions.

It took an amazing amount of self control not to immediately pull out the cameras and begin filming everything that we were witnessing after anticipating documenting the Tarahumara people's lives and community for over a year. The entire community discussed how they would equally be involved, making sure not to exclude any family member of the community. We were amazed at their sense of unity and honor for one others equality of opportunity and decision making. Everyone in the community seemed to be full of life and excitement to be part of this endeavor and to display the traditions and skills that they were most uniquely talented in. The remainder of our stay we would film from sun up to sun down. We witnessed aspects of their lives we never could have imagined having the opportunity to see.

Stylistically, we chose to accompany the raw footage of the Tarahumara with interviews of individuals whose lives were directly impacted by the Tarahumara. Visiting authors, farmers, nutritionist, doctors, and ultra-runners from across the United States, we were amazed at the authentic passion these individuals shared about their unique experience in Mexico's Copper Canyons.

Our original music score features songs inspired by the Tarahumara’s natural environment and culture, performed by Romayne Wheeler, the internationally renowned Copper Canyon pianist. GOSHEN film’s soundtrack also features instrumental songs by Icelandic band amiina that evoke the childlike, carefree spirit of the Tarahumara. The film’s music score also features traditional Tarahumara songs performed by a Tarahumara violinist and drummer. Our soundtrack is synchronized to coincide with the moving images, further influencing an emotional response from the viewer.