EVENT: Hitchhiking to the Edge of Sanity

Posted by Adventure 16 | 01.22.2018

In 1971 in Accra, Ghana, Steve Ewert woke up in a cold sweat. Bugs crawled out his mouth. Fear gripped his very soul. “I’m losing my mind!” he cried repeatedly to his travel companion Dick Russell.

Hitchhiking to the edge of Sanity Movie poster  A man outside vw bus in the desert

What started out as two young Kansas kids setting out to find themselves in late 1970, soon turned to disillusionment and danger. Photographer Ewert and writer Russell crossed the Mediterranean and set out to hitchhike across the Sahara Desert, a 2700 mile trip that started in revolutionary hotspot Algeria (where they intended to meet exiled Black Panther Eldridge Cleaver) and ended in sub-Saharan Ghana.

With Ewert taking numerous pictures with his Nikon F and Russell prodigiously writing on his trusty Smith Corona Skywriter, — and after they had spend 36 hours stranded in the desert waiting for a ride — the duo eventually took a ride with a multilingual Dutch revolutionary who would triumphantly quote Mao’s ”Little Red Book" and purposely ditch the van into the sand so he could smugly watch Ewert and Russell dig it out in the blistering Saharan heat. Eventually, they made it out of the desert despite being perilously close to perishing more than once. “Hitchhiking to the Edge of Sanity“ is their story of adventure, disillusionment and, ultimately, friendship.

HAPPY HALF-HOUR 6:30; FREE PRESENTATION: 7:00PM                                                                                                        Sponsored by:helix logo
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Presenter Scott PetersonScott Petersen is an Emmy-winning filmmaker with four documentaries under his belt. His projects projects, "Out of the Loop," "Scrabylon," and "The Renaissance of Mata Ortiz," have screening at multiple film festivals, museums, and universities around the country and have been featured on PBS. 


Hitchhiking to the Edge of Sanity trailer v9 from s p on Vimeo.

Official Selection: Kansas City FilmFest
Official Selection: DocUtah Int'l Documentary Film Festival
Official Selection: Kansas Int'l Fim Festival