Longtime Mountainfilm filmmaker Ethan Boehme (Ancient Marks, 2005, and Sacred Angkor Wat, 2006) and former NPR host Alex Chadwick have teamed up for this original series called Interviews, 50 Cents. The conceit is that Chadwick sets up two folding chairs, a card table and a cigar box with a sign on that reads “Interviews, 50 Cents.” He stages these moments in the middle of a street fair, a boardwalk, maybe even a film festival. Who comes along and joins him is only part of the charm, the rest comes from the conversation—which takes any number of turns from eating whale meat to walking across the country. —DH
One Plastic Beach
For 12 years, Judith Selby and Richard Lang have collected plastic trash along a one-kilometer stretch of beach near their home in northern California. At a rate of 35 pounds per hour, it isn’t surprising that they have accumulated tons of debris. What may be surprising is the art they produce with it—sculptures and abstract prints reminiscent of Paul Klee and Henri Matisse that feature 1949-vintage toys, Korean lighters, Astroturf (a common find), bubble blowers and hair curlers that may have last adorned a human head thirty or forty years ago. The artwork has exhibited at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and now, the Langs can add Mountainfilm’s 2011 filmmaker awards to their resume. Let’s hope that those pieces never find their way back to the sea, where they would join an estimated 46,000 visible pieces of plastic that float in every square mile of Earth’s oceans.
Filmmakers Trip Jennings & Andy Maser (Mountainfilm 2010, Flathead Wild and others) return to Mountainfilm with Spoil, a film in which they follow the International League of Conservation Photographers and the Gitga'ata First Nation people of British Columbia in their search for the illusive spirit bear. All white, but not albino, and more rare than the panda, the spirit bear lives only in the Great Bear Rainforest on the north coast of British Columbia, a place that is at risk from a proposed oil pipeline. In an effort to oppose the pipeline, the iLCP's mission is to create images of this rare bear and the unique ecosystem upon which it relies. At risk is an intact and rare-in-the-world temperate rain forest that is home not only to the Gitga’ata, but also to a host of animals, from the spirit bear and genetically distinct wolves to an array of marine mammals.
Extinction Talk with M Sanjayan
M. Sanjayan, the lead scientist for The Nature Conservancy discusses the Sixth Extinction and what can be done about it.