Tales From Planet Earth, Film Festival
A Panel discussion on climate change and refugees. Discussion will surround three films: Sun Come Up, Easy Like Water, and In the Footsteps of Elephants.
Sun Come Up, (2010--Work in Progress)
Jennifer Redfearn (~15 min., color, DV, US)
This is one of a series of clips from works-in-progress that Planet Earth will screen as a group along with a panel discussing the alarming phenomenon of climate change refugees. Sun Come Up is the story of the Carteret Islanders, a people living on a remote archipelago 50 miles from Papua New Guinea. Due to human-induced global climate change, the sea levels are rising--threatening the islanders’ fresh water supply, eroding their shorelines, and subjecting them to ever more unpredictable storms. Unwilling to stand by passovely while these mounting troubles threaten her people’s way of life, Ursula Rakova searches for new land for her people to move to on nearby Bougainville Island, which has troubles of its own in the wake of a recent civil war. Disturbing in its implications, yet inspiring in its portrait of people’s resilience, Sun Come Up promotes a much-needed discourse about how we as a planet will respond to a growing crisis of our own making. Filmmakers scheduled to be in attendance.
Visit the film’s official website.
Easy Like Water, (2010--Work in Progress)
Glenn Baker (~15 min., color, DV, US)
This is one of a series of clips from works-in-progress that Tales from Plant Earth will screen as a group along with a panel discussing the alarming phenomenon of climate change refugees. In Bangla, “Easy Like Water” translates roughly as “piece of cake.” The irony is that in Bangladesh--with a population half that of the U.S. crammed into the equivalent of Iowa, hovering at sea level and comprised of a massive river delta downstream from the Himalayas--water poses a relentless threat. Climate change is leading to increasing flooding, with estimates that flooding will cover 20% of Bangladesh by 2030, creating more than 20 million “climate refugees.” So Mohammed Rezwan, an architect by training, has conjured up the equivalent of environmental Jujitsu, harnessing the power of water to educate and unify the community. Since the increasing flooding means many children can't get to schools, he decided to bring the schools to the children - using a fleet of solar-powered, internet-enabled school boats to provide education to impoverished Bangladeshis, including many girls who have never had access to school before. An uplifting and important film, Easy Like Water reminds you that every crisis also is an opportunity to take action. Filmmaker scheduled to be in attendance.
Visit the film’s official website.
In the Footsteps of Elephants, (2010--Work in Progress)
Sarita Siegel (~10 min., color, DV, US)
This is one of a series of clips from works-in-progress that Tales from Planet Earth will screen as a group along with a panel discussing the alarming phenomenon of climate change refugees. Sarita Siegel's In the Footsteps of Elephants, co-produced by Tales creator Gregg Mitman, is the parallel story of two cultures who once lived together, now caught in conflict. Racked by one of the worst droughts in decades, the Turkana tribe in northern Kenya and Uganda have been forced from their traditional migratory pastoral lifestyle to a largely sedentary existence, farming on marginal lands. At the same time, the elephants of the area have seen their traditional migration routes closed off by human settlement and their cultures and social hierarchies decimated by the ivory trade and conflict with their human neighbors. This film chronicles the tensions and overlapping stories of these two cultures, both on the verge of extinction and both caught in much larger webs of climate change, global trade, and war. In the end, where once the Turkana people migrated in the footsteps of elephants now both elephants and humans will have to find new ways of living together on a changing planet. Co-Producer Gregg Mitman will be in attendance.