By Ksenia Lakovic
On May 29, the fourth annual San Francisco Green Film Festival commenced. It showcases 60 new films from 21 countries, with over 70 visiting filmmakers and guests speakers who are delving into the world’s most urgent environmental issues and most innovative solutions.
The festival was launched in 2011, by Rachel Caplan, to inspire collaborative environmental action. Previous festivals included events such as West Coast premiere of Werner Herzog “Happy People: A Year in Taiga”, and a conversation with the acclaimed author Margaret Atwood following the presentation of Ron Mann’s “In the Wake of the Flood”. Screenings also went outdoors to Annie Alley in downtown San Francisco, while festival awards were 3-D printed in the cinema lobby using green, non-toxic, recyclable and compostable materials in a zero waste process.
This year’s festival launched at Aquarium of the Bay, with the screening of “Damnation”, in which directors Travis Rummel and Ben Knight show how the removal of obsolete dams can bring rivers and their surrounding landscapes back to their natural state. Following the theme of Water in The West, the festival presents the visually stunning “Watermark”, by Jennifer Baichwal and Edward Burtynsky, and the Hollywood classic “Chinatown”.
Additional screening topics include nature, oceans, food security, healthy kids and livable cities. In “Once Upon a Forest”, Luc Jacquet, the director of the Oscar-winning “March of the Penguins”, takes a spectacular journey into the tropical rainforests of the Peruvian Amazon and Gabon. “Emptying the Skies”, based on Jonathan Franzen’s New Yorker essay, follows migratory songbirds in the Mediterranean, millions of which are unlawfully slaughtered each year. The festival concludes with filmmaker ML Lincoln’s “Wrenched: The Legacy of the Monkey Wrench Gang”, a documentary about the pioneer of eco-activism Edward Abbey and his legacy in the 21st century.
For more information on the Festival, which runs until June 4, 2014, click here.
About the Writer
K. Lakovic is a writer based in San Francisco Bay Area, currently working on a collection of linked short stories, set between her native Serbia and California. She loves revisiting Southeast Europe and traveling to just about anywhere in the world. Follow her on twitter @lakovick