2021 was a pivotal moment for Cinema Verde as we shifted our festival into the virtual realm for the first time.
A Dinner Party
In the aftermath of climate catastrophe, a lonely former environmental activist invites three strange guests over for dinner.
Bury Me at Taylor Hollow
Bury Me at Taylor Hollow follows the growing pains of Larkspur as they set out to raise $210,000 to buy 112 acres for both natural burial and conservation. With breathtaking footage and intimate moments of a soul finding its way, director Orion Pahl and writer/editor Rebekah Pahl weave an unforgettable glimpse into a new way of approaching death. More than just a film about death, Bury Me is about the through-line present in all our lives if we keep our ears close to the ground and listen.
Elephant Keeper is the story of an elder indigenous mahout who is adjusting to a new job in ecotourism in the remote jungles of Sainyabuli Province, Laos. Senior mahout, Mr. Tong, arrives at the Elephant Conservation Center (ECC) in search of work to support his family, and is paired with Mae Dok, the Center’s sweet and stubborn 60-year-old elephant matriarch. As he adapts to a new routine away from home, Mr. Tong finds a confidant in his elephant charge. The immersive contemplative nature of the cinematography allows the audience to feel present within the action and story in a complex narrative rich with visual metaphor and symbolism, exploring themes of Extinction & Conservation, Industrialization & Globalization, and Culture & Identity.
ETHYL Part Two
ETHYL PART TWO takes us on a journey to Santa Fe Community College to see how Ethyl is educating surrounding communities to bring awareness to the impacts of plastic use and solutions for a sustainable future.
Future of the Past
The nuclear accident at Fukushima was pointed out as "pollution" by environmental historians and despite nearly a decade having passed since the Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami disaster, the after-effects are still being felt by people from the region. As people grasp at possible ways to recover and move forward, IWASAKI Takamasa, the director of this film, uses the documentary format to look at the past to find ways to the future.
This is a short film focusing on multi-generational tree planting and the long-term benefits for ALL. Growing Hope amplifies the message of the non-profit www.grandtrees.org and its initiative to plant trees by young and old for a brighter future for us all.
I Want To Breathe Sweet Air
I Want to Breathe Sweet Air, a film poem in three parts with acclaimed writer Lucy English, is a stunning and terribly beautiful visual indictment of careless land development and the impact of climate change on the natural environment, incorporating footage shot specifically for this project as well as footage from the vast library accumulated by Outlier Moving Pictures during six years of documenting environmental destruction.
Kalpataru (The Tree)
Kalpataru: (A wish-fulfilling, divine tree in Hinduism, Jainism, and Buddhism.) The story highlights the importance of environment conservation. An ordinary laborer loses his young adult son. Doctors attribute his son's untimely death to medical conditions exacerbated by pollution. The man connects the importance of good health to clean, pure air and takes it upon himself to plant trees in hopes of saving others from the same fate his son suffered. Witness a determined man's decades-long journey, fraught with obstacles, drama, and hope for a better future.
Kingdom of Waste
Our garbage accumulates and gives life to a plastic monster. We wish his reign to be short. It is probably time to think over how we produce and consume to pollute less.
Kiss the Ground
Kiss the Ground reveals that, by regenerating the world’s soils, we can completely and rapidly stabilize Earth’s climate, restore lost ecosystems and create abundant food supplies. Using compelling graphics and visuals, along with striking NASA and NOAA footage, the film artfully illustrates how, by drawing down atmospheric carbon, soil is the missing piece of the climate puzzle. This movie is positioned to catalyze a movement to accomplish the impossible – to solve humanity’s greatest challenge, to balance the climate and secure our species future.
Land of the Leopard or The Phenomenon of Man
The Far Eastern, or Amur, leopard (Panthera pardus orientalis) is one of the rarest subspecies of the cat family. Today the Far Eastern leopard is on the brink of extinction. With the example of Far Eastern leopard our film is discussing what is going on with biodiversity in the world, what are the key challenges humankind is facing today in this sphere. Are we facing sixth extinction? And what are the key features of humankind which can help to avoid that?
Life - Plastic Wrapped
Life: Plastic Wrapped was filmed and edited during 2020 Quarantine. Did you know plastics are making a HUGE comeback due to COVID-19? The increase of plastic production and waste has been directly affected by this global pandemic. The poem, "I am a head in a plastic bag (for Sasha)" was written by collaborator Haley White in relation to my obsession with our plastic problem. Taking ownership of my own participation in our plastic world and climate catastrophe has allowed me to contemplate these issues on a deeper level.
Nanuq - An Arctic Journey From Past to Future
1928, 81st parallel North, the Italia Airship, under the command of general Umberto Nobile, crashes into the North Pole icepack. Nine crew members survive. One dies on impact. Six crew members are trapped inside the airship envelope. They will never be found, and, as of today, their destiny is unknown. Paola Catapano, director of audio-visual communications at the CERN center in Geneva, begins to seek the relic of the Italia airship, and to put together an international team of scientists, explorers and science communicators to pay homage to a lost past and give hope to a future which is in serious danger because of humanity’s irresponsible behavior. In the most remote seas lies the memory of the wreck of the Italia airship, rediscovered and remembered through a voyage which is driven by the need for discovery, commemoration, and knowledge, against the backdrop of a present characterized by uncertainty and nostalgia for a lost past, an alternative present, and a future which may be lost.
Annalaura di Luggo, Neapolitan artist and visionary, proposes a bold concept of cultural and social rebirth for her city by transforming discarded scraps of recycled aluminum into works of art, enlisting the aid of some troubled teenagers from the Spanish Neighborhood and offering them a new perspective on life…. A Journey into the light "Napoli Eden will premiére in Rome at the Italian PARLIAMENT on October 6, 2020" The whole story is the adventure of the Neapolitan artist Annalaura di Luggo (awarded at the 58th Venice Biennale) who is about to face the city of Naples for the installation of her gigantic works, made using recycled aluminum waste.
Old Man Cod
The film follows an old Cod stuck in a drying pool in the Darling River outback Australia.
Peloton Against Plastic
Plastic is choking our planet, don’t dwell on it, let’s act. Embark on an odyssey as two Aussies and a bunch of eco guardians ride bicycles from Hanoi to Bangkok meeting proactive locals tackling plastic pollution. Our foe is strong, lightweight, greater in numbers and cheap, but we will prevail!
Rab Island ''The Another Side''
The film shows the island of Rab and its peculiarities in two completely different climatic characteristics. The first part of the film shows the beauty of the landscape nature and the Mediterranean climate of the island in the period from April to October. The second part of the film shows the island from November to March. In these months, the Mediterranean climate changes into a completely different climate and shows its other face, i.e. the island of Rab then changes into a different beauty. It is up to the guests to experience the island in those months and feel the way of life on the island in those conditions and not just in the summer months.
Spoken word poetry short film, written from the Earth's perspective from the beginning of time to present pandemic.
Seeding Change: The Power of Conscious Commerce
20 years ago, a young group of social entrepreneurs started a company to sustainably harvest acai in the Brazilian rainforest. Along the way, they joined a movement of purpose-driven companies looking to change the world through an alternative economic model. These "triple bottom line" businesses measure success not only financially but also socially and environmentally. Their practice of "conscious commerce" addresses some of today’s most challenging issues. This award-winning documentary empowers viewers to be part of the solution by "voting with their dollars" and supporting brands and products that make positive change for the planet.
Sentinels of Silence? Whale Watching, Noise, and the Orca
Does whale watching protect or harm whales? This film explores heated controversies over whale watching, boat noise, and orca conservation in Washington State and British Columbia. Whale watching companies claim that they serve as "sentinels" protecting the orca from unwary recreational boaters, ferries, and ships. A number of local conservationists and scientists have argued that whale watching boats crowd and harass whales, while adding noise to the orcas' immediate environment that makes it difficult for the social species to survive. "Sentinels of Silence?" uses dramatic imagery, peer-reviewed science, and interviews with conservationists, scientists, and industry officials to bring a fascinating chapter in the orca conservation story to light. In December, 2020, three months after Sentinels of Silence? was released, the Washington State Fish and Wildlife Commission made an historic decision to more closely regulate whale watching companies' activities around the Southern Resident Killer Whales, citing noise and harassment as factors.
SH*T SAVES THE WORLD
The #2 problem facing humanity. Sh*t Saves the World is a humorous take on our species’ impact on the Earth, exploring serious topics in an environmental documentary format. The project brings to light subjects that are not often discussed… at least not at the dinner table.
Atlanta is a bustling metropolis of the south eastern US. While this surge of growth is great news for the city's residents, the illuminated skyline is posing a serious hazard for the nation's migrating bird population. As the city expands and our skyline develops, local scientists work to find the balance of safety for ourselves and our avian life.
Sockeye Salmon. Red Fish
Sockeye, a species of wild salmon, is born in Kamchatkan waters and spends its entire life in the Pacific Ocean. Only once does it return to fresh waters - to give offspring, start the circle of life, and die. It is an inexhaustible resource that feeds billions of people on the planet, restored every year! But soon, we may find ourselves facing the unimaginable: humans will exhaust the inexhaustible!
Stories Happen in Forests
12 people. In the woods. Telling their stories... I hiked out into the forests of the Southeast to listen. What I found in the power of story and in our connections to the forests is more important now than ever. Forests hold our stories. Our history. Our dreams. Our strength. Our future. Humanity happens in forests. Stories happen in forests.
Swallowtail - An Apprenticeship Story
Swallowtail: An Apprenticeship Story follows six young aspiring farmers as they navigate the rollercoaster season of 2019-2020 in North Central Florida. The film centers on the thoughts and experiences of these apprentices who leave home to live at Swallowtail Farm and how the COVID-19 pandemic turned an already challenging learning experience into an unprecedented one. Throughout their journey, they reflect on issues of food security, sustainability practices, and community.
The Ghastly Fowl
Conversations about planetary destruction, global pandemics and the extinction of so many species, are never easy to start. The fact is, we are all complicit, simply because we have been born into a time of consumerism, avarice and blind searching. And the only way we are going to make it through this terrifying time as a species is if we work together in harmony with the planet rather than in opposition to it. The Ghastly Fowl takes a look at where we are now and where we could go from here, focusing on responsibility rather than blame. A stark, beautifully animated short story that peels away the layers of the human psyche in a countdown towards the end, which could also be the beginning.
The Protectors of the Wood
The Protectors of the Wood Adventure Series is an illustrated story of a group of teenagers who save the world from climate change. Phoebe comes home from college to discover shocking changes threatening Middletown, her familiar childhood home. A gigantic corporation already owns many local businesses, and is threatening to destroy the lands, legends, and heritage of her family and friends. Mysteries arise as Phoebe unravels the secrets in her small town and realizes that they are connected to a global conflict. Together, Phoebe and her group of friends risk their lives to save the beautiful world around them called home.
The Great Divide
Twenty minutes outside of Visalia, amidst the seemingly endless rows of citrus trees, Yolanda Cuevas packs enchiladas with shredded chicken for her husband Benjamin, their adult daughters and two teenaged grandchildren in her modest single-story home. Their house is the first one off the main drag, one of 83 lining the two crumbling roads that comprise the tiny town of Tooleville. Yolanda must wash the tomatoes for the salsa first in the sink and then again with a splash of clean water from a 5-gallon jug. The process is arduous, and though she’s resigned to do it, she’s not happy about it. Along with Tooleville’s several hundred other residents, Yolanda’s family has survived on bi-weekly delivery of water to their homes for the past 12 years. It’s an annoyance for the family, and it’s expensive for the State of California, which has been paying for the replacement water since the discovery of Chromium-6 (the same chemical featured in Erin Brokovich) in the water. The simpler solution would be to consolidate the town’s water system with that of its larger, affluent neighbor to the west, Exeter. And for this purpose, Yolanda has become a reluctant activist, attending community meetings in Tooleville and lobbying for consolidation at Exeter’s city council meetings under the expert guidance of Pedro Hernandez, an organizer with the Leadership Counsel. While Exeter has resisted the consolidation since it was first proposed, organizers like Pedro feel that this could be the year Exeter finally succumbs to the growing community pressure and brings Tooleville into the fold. The decision will echo around the Central Valley and across the state, as hundreds of similar community water systems find themselves in a nearly identical predicament.