Corporate salesman for a natural gas company, Steve Butler arrives in a rural town with his sales partner, Sue Thomason. With the town having been hit hard by the economic decline of recent years, the two outsiders see the local citizens as likely to accept their company’s offer, for drilling rights to their properties, as much-needed relief. What seems like an easy job for the duo becomes complicated by the objection of a respected schoolteacher with support from a grassroots campaign led by another man who counters Steve both personally and professionally.
Chasing Ice is the story of one man’s mission to change the tide of history by gathering undeniable evidence of our changing planet. Within months of that first trip to Iceland, photographer James Balog conceived the boldest expedition of his life: The Extreme Ice Survey. With a band of young adventurers in tow, Balog began deploying revolutionary time-lapse cameras across the brutal Arctic to capture a multi-year record of the world’s changing glaciers. Battling untested technology in subzero conditions, Balog comes face to face with his own mortality. His hauntingly beautiful videos compress years into seconds and capture ancient mountains of ice in motion as they disappear at a breathtaking rate.
Vegucated is a feature-length documentary that follows three meat- and cheese-loving New Yorkers who agree to adopt a vegan diet for six weeks. They have no idea that so much more than steak is at stake and that the fate of the world may fall on their plates. Part sociological experiment, part science class, and part adventure story, Vegucated showcases the rapid and at times comedic evolution of three people who share one journey and ultimately discover their own paths in creating a kinder, cleaner, greener world, one bite at a time.
Director Werner Boote uses Plastic Planet to present an up-close and personal view of the controversial and fascinating material that has found its way into every facet of our daily lives: plastic. Throughout the film, Boote makes it his mission to discover the real dangers of plastic and expose the producers of this hazardous waste for what they’re really doing — poisoning their consumers. He takes us on a journey around the globe, showing that plastics have become a threat for both the environment and human health.
Gasland Part II
In Gasland Part II, Fox examines the long-run impact of the controversial process, including poisonous water, earthquakes and neurological damage, placing his focus on the people whose lives have been irreparably changed. Traveling from the Gulf of Mexico to the heart of Texas and back up to the Delaware River basin, he thoroughly investigates the effects of this once-touted energy source, as well as the industry’s equally disturbing reaction to negative claims via smear campaigns and lawsuits. Gasland Part II shows how the anti-fracking movement has done its best to amplify its message while the million-dollar conglomerates employ PSY-OPS tactics to shut it down.
In Watershed, we meet a fly fishing guide in Rocky Mountain National Park, a Colorado rancher, a Delta restoration worker, a Navajo Council member, the Rifle Colorado Mayor, a Los Angeles native and a group of Outward Bound teens rafting down the Colorado River as they all reflect a compelling new water ethic — one that illuminates how letting go of the ways of old can lead to a path of coexisting with enough for all. In addition they all recognize the importance of purchasing the water rights necessary to reconnect the river to its delta. Watershed is a central tool in a larger grassroots effort focused on saving the Colorado River and supporting the communities throughout the river basin.
Bidder 70 tells the story of Tim DeChristopher, a young man who disrupted a controversial BLM Oil and Gas leasing auction in 2008. He posed as a bidder (#70) and bid $1.7 million to win 22,000 acres of land he had no intention of paying for (or drilling on). Tim was federally indicted, convicted and sentenced to two years in prison for his courageous act of civil disobedience. Bidder 70 is a personal story surrounded by a wider context of citizen action, our history of peaceful civil disobedience, and grass roots movements demanding government and industry accountability.
All films start at 7 p.m. in Sweigart Auditorium (115) and will be followed by a brief discussion. Chasing Ice will be in Science 102.
Printed in the 9/18/13 edition.