WHEN YOU THINK OF RIO, YOU THINK of soccer. The country is so completely gung-ho about its national sport that it’s hard to imagine that there are any other sports played in the city. But it turns out that Brazil has a second-favorite sport: flying kites.
It’s more badass than it sounds: rather than just leisurely kite flying, participants in “soltar pipas” tear up their hands on kite strings as they try to knock their opponent’s kites out of the sky. The game, which is popular in the favelas, involves a lot of strategy and a lot of loss. It’s basically a free-for-all on the rooftops of Rio’s slums. Filmmakers Guilherme Tensol and Leandro HBL made this short on the kite-fighters of Rocinha, Rio’s largest favela.