PEFF 2010

Saturday January 2, 2010


 

Presentation: Philly Zoo on Wheels
Saturday Jan. 2, 10:00 a.m.

The Philadelphia Zoo, America’s first zoo, rolls into Princeton with their “Zoo on Wheels” outreach program for children, families and all ages. Their staff will provide a lively presentation on conservation and endangered species, and they will bring along bio-facts and a few live animal friends from the zoo.

 

Endangered Generation
Directed by Alex Kasdin.
Saturday Jan. 2, 12:00 p.m.
Running time: 21 min.

This short documentary, in its premiere screening, features interviews with the director of the Mercer County Wildlife Center, the director of the New Jersey Chapter of the Nature Conservancy, acclaimed children’s wildlife TV show creators Chris and Martin Kratt, and New Jersey fifth graders. They discuss the importance of educating children about the environment and endangered species and instill in children a desire to save these animals and these habitats.

Alex Kasdin is a senior at Princeton High School in Princeton, NJ and an Ambassador Girl Scout in the Princeton Troop 71499, and she has worked as a volunteer on the 2010 PEFF Planning Committee. She chose to make this film for her Girl Scout Gold Award project, a service project that allows one to earn the highest award in Girl Scouting. The plight of endangered species has always been an issue close to Ms. Kasdin’s heart; she has desired to work in endangered species conservation since her first grade teacher told her that her favorite animals, penguins, were endangered. She views this film as the first step in her long journey in conservation.

A Q&A with follows the film with Alex Kasdin.

 

Earth
Directed by Alastair Fothergill; Mark Linfield.
Saturday Jan. 2, 1:00 p.m.

The story of three animal families (polar bears, elephants and Humpbacked whales) and their amazing journeys across the planet combines rare action, unimaginable scale and impossible locations.

James Earl Jones narrates this true-life adventure, the first to be made by Disneynature. The film, suitable for ages 5 and older, is filled with rare footage of outstanding clarity as the animals make their way through the ages-old patterns of migration.

More information

 

Veer
Directed and produced by Greg Fredette.
Saturday Jan. 2, 3:30 p.m.
Running time: 93 minutes

This film explores America’s fast-growing bicycling culture by profiling five adults whose lives are inextricably tied to bicycling, and the bike-centric social groups they belong to. Based in their hometown, and filmed by Portland, Greg Fredette and Jason Turner, the film follows these characters over the course of a year, offering a behind-the-scenes look at their personal struggles and triumphs. “Veer” examines what it means to be part of a community, and how social movements are formed.

A Q&A follows the film with producer Greg Fredette.

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Festival Opening Party
Live music by Steve Hiltner and the Sustainable Jazz Ensemble
Saturday Jan. 2, 5:45 p.m.

Serving up live “sustainable” jazz with Princeton’s own Steve Hiltner and the Sustainable Jazz Ensemble — who will be presenting locally composed music that seeks to produce more electricity than it consumes. No virgin timbres were harvested in the making of this music. Steve Hiltner on sax, Phil Orr on piano, and Jerry D’Anna on bass

OPENING PARTY: Light and local refreshments courtesy of Mediterra Restaurant, Olives, Small World Coffee and The Whole Earth Center of Princeton, along with some previews of festival films and videos from Hometown Princeton’s “Why I Shop Local”   video contest will be served at the party too.

 

The Age of Stupid
Directed by Franny Armstrong.
Saturday Jan. 2, 7:30 p.m.
Running time: 89 min.

This drama-documentary-animation hybrid stars Pete Postlethwaite as a man living alone in the devastated world of 2055, watching archive footage from 2008 and asking “Why didn’t we stop climate change when we had the chance?” Franny Armstrong wrote and directed the film, which tells six separate stories of demise caused by the effects of global warming and ignorance about its severity decades earlier.

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Sunday January 3, 2010


 

Deep Down: A Story From the Heart of Coal Country
Directed and produced by Jen Gilomen Sally Rubin.
Sunday Jan. 3, 1:00 p.m.
A work-in-progress screening.
Running time: 60 min.

This film, a work-in-progress, and it follows a town in Eastern Kentucky as the community and landscape begin to change dramatically through mountaintop removal mining.  Any exploration of power production in America will lead to Appalachia, a region that has supplied our nation with coal for over a century. As America’s energy consumption rises, the extraction and burning of coal to meet these demands has dramatically altered the Appalachian landscape, economy, and culture. In Appalachia, coal is the number one industry, with an enormous influence on local economies and people. At the same time, few Americans know about mountaintop removal mining (MTR), nor have any knowledge that their own demand for power is directly impacting the mountains, water, and sky.

A Q&A follows the screening with filmmaker Sally Rubin and Terry Ratliff, who is featured in the film.

More information

 

Woven Ways
Directed by Linda Helm Krapf.
Sunday Jan. 3, 3:30 p.m.
Running time: 49 min.

Filmed amid the dramatic landscapes of the Navajo reservation lands in eastern Arizona and western New Mexico, this multifaceted documentary incisively explores the profound relationships between the Navajo people, their land, and their livestock, and illustrates how their environment sustains their traditional culture and lives.

The film also examines how environmental issues threaten the Navajo’s health, culture, and well-being. Deadly uranium mining and dirty coal power plants pose serious problems for the Navajo. Much of the nation’s uranium and valuable deposits of coal, gas, and oil lay beneath the Reservation, yet one-third of Navajo homes are without electricity. The Navajo live with all of the negative health and environmental impacts of these resources, yet share in few of the benefits derived from them.

Woven Ways allows Native Americans to tell their stories in their own words, with no script and no narration. It is a character-driven film that focuses on the individual stories of five Navajo families and the empirical evidence they gather each day from a life lived close to the earth. The film chronicles the resilience and steady resolve of these families to preserve their way of life and defend what is sacred to them – the land, air, and water – not just for themselves, but for generations to come.

A panel discussion follows the film featuring “Woven Ways” director Linda Helm Krapf, with Matt Elliott, Clean Energy and Global Warming Advocate for Environment, NJ; and Pam Frank, Marketing dDirector for Sun Farm Network.

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Monday January 4, 2010


 

From Trash 2 Art to Home Energy Audits
Monday Jan. 4, 12:00 p.m.

Come meet the Princeton residents, business owners and others who are leading the charge to make Princeton more sustainable in our schools, businesses, homes and municipalities. Bring a bag lunch! Join a working group and join the movement.  Those bringing re-usable lunch containers will win a cool prize! Presented by Sustainable Princeton.

 

Ingredients
Directed by Robert Bates; Produced by Brian Kimmel.
Monday Jan. 4, 2:00 p.m.
Running time: 73 min.

American food is in a state of crisis. Obesity and diabetes are on the rise, food costs are skyrocketing, family farms are in decline, and our agricultural environment is in jeopardy. A feature-length documentary film, “Ingredients” explores a thriving local food movement as our world becomes a more flavorless, disconnected and dangerous place to eat.

Narrated by Bebe Neuwirth, the film takes us across the United States; from the urban food deserts of Harlem to the diversified farms of the Hudson River and Willamette Valleys and to the kitchens of celebrated chefs Alice Waters, Peter Hoffman and Greg Higgins. The journey reveals the people behind the movement to bring good food back to the table and health back to our communities.

The film will be followed by a discussion led by Mikey

Azzara, founder and owner of Zone 7, a farm-fresh distribution company that sources from organic and sustainable farms in NJ / PA and delivers to restaurants, grocery stores, and schools.

 

Crash: A Tale of Two Species
Directed, produced and written by Allison Argo.
Monday Jan. 4, 4:00 p.m.
Running time: 55 min.

The PBS NATURE production investigates the symbiotic relationship between the Red Knot and the Horseshoe Crab, and discusses the prospective ways in which human intervention could alternately bolster or destroy that connection.

Each year, a small shorebird that winters on the southern tip of South America must make a 10,000-mile journey to its nesting grounds in the Arctic – one of the longest migrations on earth. The pocket-sized long distance traveler times its migration precisely to coincide with the annual spawning of one of earth’s most ancient creatures. Horseshoe crab eggs in the Delaware Bay fuel the little bird’s epic journey to the Arctic… but recently, bird numbers have started to crash. The story of the red knot and the horseshoe crab is a living example of how every species is interconnected – each one important, no matter how big or small.

More information

 

Fresh
Directed and produced by Ana Joanes.
Monday Jan. 4, 7:00 p.m.
Running time: 72 minutes

“Fresh” celebrates the farmers, thinkers and business people across America who are re-inventing our food system. Each has witnessed the rapid transformation of our agriculture into an industrial model, and confronted the consequences: food contamination, environmental pollution, depletion of natural resources, and morbid obesity. Forging healthier, sustainable alternatives, they offer a practical vision for a future of our food and our planet.

Among several main characters, “Fresh” features urban farmer and activist, Will Allen, the recipient of MacArthur’s 2008 Genius Award; sustainable farmer and entrepreneur, Joel Salatin, made famous by Michael Pollan’s book, The Omnivore’s Dilemma; and supermarket owner, David Ball, challenging our Wal-Mart dominated economy.

A discussion follows the film, led by Beth Feehan, co-founder of the West Windsor Community Farmers’ Market and co-founder of the New Jersey Farm to School Network, and Judith Robinson, a former organic produce grower who has taught organic food production and preservation.

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Tuesday January 5, 2010


 

The Garden
Directed and produced by Scott Hamilton Kennedy.
Tuesday Jan. 5, 12:00 p.m.
Running time: 80 min.

The fourteen-acre community garden at 41st and Alameda in South Central Los Angeles is the largest of its kind in the United States. Started as a form of healing after the devastating L.A. riots in 1992, the South Central Farmers have since created a miracle in one of the country’s most blighted neighborhoods.

The film follows the plight of the farmers, mostly immigrants from Latin America, them organize, fight back, and demand answers in an effort to save their 14-acre garden when the land is sold to a wealthy developer for millions less than fair-market value.

A discussion follows the film, led by Elyse Pivnick, Vice President of Environment and Community Health Programs at Isles, Inc.

More information

 

The New Metropolis
Directed and produced by Andrea Torrice.
Tuesday Jan. 5, 2:00 p.m.
Running time: 53 min.

Two short documentaries highlight the efforts of some of America’s first suburbs to reverse their long decline: “A Crack In The Pavement” and “The New Neighbors”.

America’s “first” suburbs, those suburban communities built next to America’s urban centers, were once the birthplace of the American Dream. Driven by a desire to escape the smokestacks of the central cities, and a housing shortage following World War II, thousands of suburban homes were rapidly constructed and middle class families flocked to fill them. Sixty years later, many of these original suburbs are facing a crisis: a dwindling tax base, population and business loss, decaying infrastructure, and increased racial tensions. Lacking policies to help reverse these trends, many towns are looking for strategies for revitalization.

These two half-hour documentaries use personal stories to highlight these issues: “A Crack In The Pavement”, narrated by Peter Coyote, features two first suburban officials struggling to fix their crumbling infrastructure and argues for regional cooperation. “The New Neighbors”, narrated by Ruby Dee, tells the inspiring story of two ordinary people, one black and one white, who have successfully made racial integration the centerpiece of revitalizing Pennsauken, NJ.

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Bhutan: Taking the Middle Path to Happiness
Directed and produced by Tom Vendetti.
Tuesday Jan. 5, 4:00 p.m.
Running time: 57 min.

Imagine a country where happiness is the guiding principle of government. Imagine a people who see all life as sacred and the source of their happiness, a place with an abundance of clean and renewable energy, a nation committed to preserving its culture. Imagine a Kingdom where the King lives in a simple wooden cottage and judges his progress by the country’s “Gross National Happiness.” Welcome to Bhutan. But can a place like Bhutan really exist? Can such ideals be realized? This idea is rooted in the simple message Buddha shared with them: happiness lies in the middle path.

A discussion follows the film led by  Karen Mintz, a producer/director who is finishing production on a feature-length documentary film about Bhutan; Bhutanese writer Sonam Ongmo; Lincoln S. Hollister, Professor of Geosciences, Princeton University; and T.Tobgay, graduate student, Department of Geosciences, Princeton University.

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So Right So Smart
Co-Directed by: Justin Maine, Guy Noerr, Leanne Robinson Maine & Michael Swantek.
Tuesday Jan. 5, 7:00 p.m.
Running time: 93 min.

This documentary shows how businesses that have begun to take steps toward a positive future have experienced success. An inspirational story of leadership and hope, the film opens a dialogue between some of the world’s most reputable environmental experts and the country’s brightest minds in business in order to explore the connection between economy and environment. From Wal-Mart to Patagonia, Stonyfield Farm to New Belgium Brewery, several institutions are making an effort toward sustainability with the goal of becoming restorative in nature.

A discussion follows the film featuring Gary Hirshberg, chairman, president, and CE-Yo of Stonyfield Farm; Guy Noerr, executive producer and co-director; Justin Maine, producer and co-director; Leanne Robinson Maine, producer, writer and co-director; and Michael Swantek, editor and co-director.

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Wednesday January 6, 2010


 

HOTSPOTS
Directed and written by Michael Tobias; Produced by Jane Gray Morrison and Michael Tobias.
Wednesday Jan. 6, 12:00 p.m.
Running time: 109 min.

The film chronicles the work of Dr. Russell Mittermeier, president of Conservation International, and hosted by Dr. Mittermeir, and is based on his book of the same name. Jane Morrison, the film’s producer enthuses, “He is the Indiana Jones of natural science”.  In HOTSPOTS, Mittermeier journeys throughout the world to assess key biological HOTSPOTS that are representative of areas everywhere at most serious risk.

Technically, “hotspots” refer to areas of the planet which are populated by the largest number of unique plant, animal and insect species at risk of extinction, a definition that pivots upon the number of flowering plants (at least 1500 different species) and the amount of area that has already been lost to development (at least 70%). Scientists coined the term in the late 1980s and since that time, the number of areas characterized as “HOTSPOTS” has increased to 35 encompassing approximately 2.3 percent of the Earth’s terrestrial surface.

 

Liquid Assets
Produced by the Penn State Public Broadcasting Department.
Wednesday Jan. 6, 4:00 p.m.
Running time: 90 min.

Liquid Assets tells the story of essential infrastructure systems: water, wastewater and storm-water. These systems — some in the ground for more than 100 years — provide a critical public health function and are essential for economic development and growth. Largely out of sight and out of mind, these aging systems have not been maintained, and some estimates suggest this is the single largest public works endeavor in our nation’s history.

Exploring the history, engineering challenges, and political and economic realities in urban and rural locations, the documentary provides an understanding of the hidden assets that support our way of life. Locations featured in the documentary include Atlanta, Boston, Herminie (Pennsylvania), Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, New York City, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and Washington, D.C.

More information

 

Presentation: Approaches to Green Building & Remodeling at Home
Wednesday Jan. 6, 7:00 p.m.

Greening your house does not necessarily mean installing expensive, new systems. There are many opportunities, both large and small, for homeowners to live comfortably while improving energy efficiency, indoor air quality, water usage, and more. Join us for a lively panel presentation and hear from professionals in the field of green building, architecture and design as well as people who have recently gone through the renovation process at home. Moderated by Karen K. Nathan.

Panelists:
David August, Princeton Township home-owner doing and extensive (entire house) green renovation. David had decided to serve as the General Contractor of his home renovation and can discuss the choices he has made at every stage of the building and renovating process.
Chad Fath, Princeton resident, will address green renovation and the home insurance considerations.
A Greenstreet represenative. Greenstreet, headquartered in Princeton, is a construction firm specializing in energy efficient, healthy, and green building.
Ed Haemmerle, Founder of NJRenewableEnergy.com. Ed is a contractor and installer of green technologies, such as wind, solar, geothermal,  and water harvesting.
Heidi Fichtenbaum, Coordinator of Sustainable Princeton’s Residential Committee , Sustainable Princeton
Athena Sarafides, Ewing Township resident who recently completed a kitchen renovation with an eye toward green practices and finishes. She will talk about her experience doing this smaller (but still significant) project.
Joshua Zinder, Principal of Joshua Zinder Architecture and Design, headquartered in Princeton. Josh is a LEED AP and incorporates a green philosophy into all of his residential and commercial projects.

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Thursday January 7, 2010


 

Dirt! The Movie
Directed and produced by Bill Benenson and Gene Rosow.
Thursday Jan. 7, 12:00 p.m.
Running time: 90 min.

“Dirt! The Movie” takes you inside the wonders of the soil. It tells the story of Earth’s most valuable and underappreciated source of fertility–from its miraculous beginning to its crippling degradation.

The opening scenes of the film dive into the wonderment of the soil. Made from the same elements as the stars, plants and animals, and us, “dirt is very much alive.” Though, in modern industrial pursuits and clamor for both profit and natural resources, our human connection to and respect for soil has been disrupted. “Drought, climate change, even war are all directly related to the way we are treating dirt.”

The film, narrated by Jaime Lee Curtis, brings to life the environmental, economic, social and political impact that the soil has. It shares the stories of experts from all over the world who study and are able to harness the beauty and power of a respectful and mutually beneficial relationship with soil.

The film will be followed by a discussion led by Steve Hiltner. Steve is the Natural Resources Manager for Friends of Princeton Open Space and is on the Princeton Environmental Commission. Steve has planted wetland gardens at local parks and schools, written stewardship plans for some of Princeton’s nature preserves, and maintains the blog “Princeton Nature Notes“.

More information

 

What’s Organic About Organic?
Directed and produced by Shelley Rogers.
Thursday Jan. 7, 2:00 p.m.
Running time: 59 min.

“What’s Organic About Organic?” rings the alarm for the need to develop an ecological consciousness.  The film illustrates that the organic food debate extends well beyond personal choice and into the realm of social responsibility. Each of the film’s characters is intimately connected to the organic world; they’re farmers, activists, and scientists.

While many folks can easily endorse “organic,” the characters in the film take the discussion beyond just shopping for another eco-label. As we glimpse into each of their lives, we see how organic agriculture has the potential to solve many of our environmental and health problems.  The film will explores how organic farming can be used as a soil and air protection system, a healthy solution to toxic pollution, and an innovative means to combat global warming.

A Q&A follows the screening with filmmaker Shelley Rogers.

More information

 

A Sense of Wonder
Directed by Christopher Monger; Produced by Karen Montgomery.
Thursday Jan. 7, 4:00 p.m.
Running time: 55 min.

When pioneering environmentalist Rachel Carson published “Silent Spring” in 1962, the backlash from her critics thrust her into the center of a political maelstrom. Despite her private persona, her convictions about the risks posed by chemical pesticides forced her into the role of controversial public figure.

Using many of Miss Carson’s own words, actress Kaiulani Lee embodies this extraordinary woman in a documentary style film which depicts Carson in the final year of her life. Struggling with cancer, Carson recounts with both humor and anger the attacks by the chemical industry, the government and the press as she focuses her limited energy to get her message to Congress and the American people.

Shot in HD by Academy Award®-winning cinematographer, Haskell Wexler, at Carson’s cottage in Maine, the film is an intimate and poignant portrait of Carson’s life as she emerges as America’s most successful advocate for the natural world. Based on Kaiulani Lee’s popular play of the same name.

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Earth Days
Directed by Robert Stone.
Thursday Jan. 7, 6:00 p.m.
Running time: 102 min.

“Earth Days” looks back to the dawn and development of the modern environmental movement—from its post-war rustlings in the 1950s and the 1962 publication of Rachel Carson’s incendiary bestseller Silent Spring, to the first wildly successful 1970 Earth Day celebration and the subsequent firestorm of political action.

Earth Days’ secret weapon is a one-two punch of personal testimony and rare archival media. The extraordinary stories of the era’s pioneers—among them Former Secretary of the Interior Stewart Udall; biologist/Population Bomb author Paul Ehrlich; Whole Earth Catalog founder Stewart Brand; Apollo Nine astronaut Rusty Schweickart; and renewable energy pioneer Hunter Lovins—are  illustrated with an incredible array of footage from candy-colored Eisenhower-era tableaux to classic tear-jerking 1970s anti-litterbug PSAs.

Directed by acclaimed documentarian Robert Stone (“Oswald’s Ghost”, “Guerrilla: The Taking of Patty Hearst”) “Earth Days” is both a poetic meditation on humanity’s complex relationship with nature and an engaging history of the revolutionary achievements—and missed opportunities—of groundbreaking eco-activism.

NOTE ABOUT SCREENING LOCATION: The screening of “Earth Days” will be at The Garden Theatre, 160 Nassau Street, Princeton. A post-screening discussion will feature filmmaker Robert Stone at the Princeton Public Library.

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Friday January 8, 2010


 

Call it Home: Searching for Truth on Bolinas Lagoon
Directed and produced by Bill Chayes and Chuck Olin.
Friday Jan. 8, 12:00 p.m.
Running time: 50 min.

The film celebrates the beauty and importance of California’s Bolinas Lagoon, and it explores the issues behind a decades-long community debate to understand the forces affecting its future, and seeks to inspire people everywhere to love and respect nature. The lagoon has been silting up, getting noticeably shallower, and opinions on what to do about it range from large scale dredging to no action at all. In the nearly four years since production began, the story has taken many unforeseen twists and turns, all of which are chronicled in the film.

The basic issue remains the same: what actions to take, if any, to effect change on the lagoon. This film is in part a legacy for the local Northern California coastal communities and their long term commitment to save “place”, to “dwell in harmony with our neighbors – those that creep and fly, those that swim and soar, those that sway on roots as well as those that walk about on two legs.”

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Presentation: Oceans in Crisis
A talk by Margo Pellegrino.
Friday Jan. 8, 2:00 p.m.

In coastal communities all across America, one woman is paddling by on her mission to educate people and rally support for policy to address and correct of the looming crisis facing our oceans.

Margo Pellegrino, from Medford Lakes, New Jersey, paddled the eastern seaboard from Miami to Maine in 2007, an intra-coastal route from New Jersey to Capitol Hill in 2008, along the Gulf coast in 2009, and is planning to paddle the Pacific coast in summer of 2010.

Margo strives to educate and inform people on the issues facing the ocean and rally public support to help create public momentum for policy change. Pushing her physical limits to spread her message, she hopes to inspire a generation and demonstrate how one person can make a difference in our world, with perhaps nothing more than a purpose and sheer determination… and a paddle. Margo will talk about her experiences and show some footage from her trips.

(Photo credit – Michael Sahadi)

 

Secrets of the Reef
Directed and written by Jonathan Bird; Produced by Christine Bird.
Friday Jan. 8, 4:00 p.m.
Running time: 78 min.

A sea turtle searches the reef for a mate. A hermit crab hunts for a new shell. A reef fish is on the prowl for a meal. Secrets of the Reef is an immersion into the metropolis of a Pacific coral reef as seen through the lives of these three animals. Their struggle for survival is set against a backdrop of incredible beauty and color, and includes dozens of other animals each going about their daily life on the reef. From the tiny, but deadly, blue-ringed octopus to the largest fish in the world, the whale shark, the lives of all the members of the coral reef community are intertwined. But all is not well in paradise. An unseen threat to the reef community approaches closer by the day–a threat bigger than any they have seen before. The film culminates in a surprising and sobering ending that makes a bold statement about reef conservation.

 

No Impact Man?
Directed by Laura Gabbert and Justin Schein;?Produced by Laura Gabbert and Eden Wurmfeld?.
Friday Jan. 8, 7:00 p.m.?
Running time: 90 min.

Colin Beavan decides to completely eliminate his personal impact on the environment for the next year and creates a blog “No Impact Man” to chronicle the experience.

It means eating vegetarian, buying only local food, and turning off the refrigerator. It also means no elevators, no television, no cars, busses, or airplanes, no toxic cleaning products, no electricity, no material consumption, and no garbage.

No problem – at least for Colin – but he and his family live in Manhattan. So when his espresso-guzzling, retail-worshipping wife Michelle and their two-year-old daughter are dragged into the fray, the No Impact Project has an unforeseen impact of its own.

The documentary film provides an intriguing inside look into the experiment that became a national fascination and media sensation, while examining the familial strains and strengthened bonds that result from Colin and Michelle’s struggle with their radical lifestyle change.

A Q&A follows the screening with filmmaker Justin Schein.

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Saturday January 9, 2010


 

The Big Green Rabbit
Directed by Pete Coggan.
Saturday Jan. 9, 10:00 a.m.
Running time: 60 min.

Join Charlie, the Big Green Rabbit, and his friends as they sing, romp and dance their way into a new world of healthy fun in this series airing on PBS. We will be screening two episodes:

“One Step at a Time: It’s Great to be Green”
Charlie and Isabelle learn that taking care of the environment can be easy if they make small changes and take it one step at a time. Songs and dances include “Big Green Action Machine”,”It’s Great to Be Green” and “”Do the Green Clean.”

“Moo La La: What is Organic?”
Charlie and Isabelle visit a farm where a cow named Bessie teaches them about organic food. Songs and dances include “The Organic Song” and “Moo La La.”

 

Riddle in a Bottle
Directed by Laura Sams and Robert Sams.
Saturday Jan. 9, 11:30 a.m.
Running time: 30 min.

Laura and Robert, a.k.a. “The Riddle Solvers,” are two siblings who run a riddle-solving stand, where they solve riddles for 5¢ apiece.  We follow them as they solve a mysterious riddle from the ocean that reaches them on an inland lake… in a message in a magic bottle. This half-hour movie for children shares how life on earth is connected through moving water.

 

Unlimited: Renewable Energy in the 21st Century
Directed and produced by OneLightOne Camera Productions.
Saturday Jan. 9, 12:00 p.m.
Running time: 26 min.

This short documentary features a group of passionate children from New Jersey calling for adults to take action and address global warming. It also includes global warming and energy experts talking about various promising technologies such as solar, wind and tidal power, transportation and the issue of food as it pertains to energy consumption.

More information

 

Presentation: Stay Healthy! Raise Healthy Children in a Toxic Environment
Saturday Jan. 9, 1:00 p.m.

Learn about the health consequences of environmental toxins and steps to take to improve health and the health of our children with nutrition and lifestyle changes.

Featuring Catherine Frompovich, author of “Our Chemical Lives and the Hijacking of Our DNA: A Probe Into What’s Probably Making Us Sick”, will be joined by certified clinical nutritionist George McAuliffe, and Deborah Donahue, registered dietician for a panel discussion. Moderated by Dorothy Mullen.

 

Big River
Directed by Curt Ellis; Produced by Curt Ellis and Aaron Woolf; co-produced by and Ian Cheney and Wicked Delicate Films.
Written by Curt Ellis, Aaron Woolf, Ian Cheney, and Jeffrey K. Miller.
Saturday Jan. 9, 3:30 p.m.
Running time: 27 min.

Following up on their Peabody winning documentary, the King Corn boys are back. For Big River, best friends Ian Cheney and Curt Ellis have returned to Iowa with a new mission: to investigate the environmental impact their acre of corn has sent to the people and places downstream.

In a journey that spans from the heartland to the Gulf of Mexico, Ian and Curt trade their combine for a canoe––and set out to see the big world their little acre of corn has touched. On their trip, flashbacks to the pesticides they sprayed, the fertilizers they injected, and the soil they plowed now lead to new questions, explored by new experts in new places. Half of Iowa’s topsoil, they learn, has been washed out to sea. Fertilizer runoff has spawned a hypoxic “dead zone” in the Gulf.  And back at their acre, the herbicides they used are blamed for a cancer cluster that reaches all too close to home.

A Q&A will follow the screening with filmmaker Aaron Woolf.

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Food Inc.
Directed by Robert Kenner.
Saturday Jan. 9, 7:00 p.m.
Running time: 94 min.

In “Food, Inc.” filmmaker Robert Kenner lifts the veil on our nation’s food industry, exposing the highly mechanized underbelly that’s been hidden from the American consumer with the consent of our government’s regulatory agencies, USDA and FDA.

Featuring interviews with such experts as Eric Schlosser (Fast Food Nation), Michael Pollan (The Omnivore’s Dilemma) along with forward thinking social entrepreneurs like Stonyfield Farms’ Gary Hirschberg and Polyface Farms’ Joe Salatin, Food, Inc. It reveals surprising — and often shocking truths — about what we eat, how it’s produced, who we have become as a nation and where we are going from here.

A post-screening discussion will feature Anna Lapp, author of “Diet for a Hot Planet.”

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Sunday January 10, 2010


 

Presentation: Turning Oil into Salt: Oil Independence and National Security
Talk by Anne Korin.
Sunday Jan. 10, 1:00 p.m.

Did you know that 97% of the fuel in U.S. transportation is based on petroleum; and two-thirds of our oil is imported?  Did you know that over one-third of green house gases come from our vehicles? With gas prices on the rise and no end in sight, our cars’ addiction to oil is bankrupting us and contributing to global warming. As long as our cars run only on gasoline, we will be held hostage and our country’s foreign policy decisions will be based on oil.

Anne Korin, of the Set American Free Coalition, will talk about her book and describe how a coalition of tree-huggers, do-gooders, cheap hawks, evangelicals and sod-busters have come together to break the oil monopoly and give consumers a choice.  From flex fuel vehicles to plug in hybrids to all electric, learn how you as a consumer and a voter can have an impact.

Co-sponsored by the library and the American Jewish Committee of Central New Jersey.

 

A Sea Change
Directed by Barbara Ettinger; Co-Produced by Barbara Ettinger, Sven Huseby and Susan Cohn Rockefeller.
Sunday Jan. 10, 3:30 p.m.
Running time: 86 min.

Imagine a world without fish. It’s a frightening premise, and it’s happening right now. “A?Sea Change” follows the journey of retired history teacher Sven Huseby on his quest to discover what is happening to the world’s oceans. After reading Elizabeth Kolbert’s “The?Darkening Sea,” Sven becomes obsessed with the rising acidity of the oceans and what this “sea change” bodes for humans. His quest takes him to Alaska, California, Washington, and Norway as he uncovers a worldwide crisis. Speaking with oceanographers, marine biologists, climatologists, and artists, Sven discovers that global warming is only half the story of the environmental catastrophe that awaits us. Excess carbon dioxide is dissolving in our oceans, changing sea-water chemistry. The more acidic water makes it difficult for tiny creatures at the bottom of the food web to form their shells. The effects could work their way up to the fish 1 billion people depend upon for their source of protein.

A Q&A follows the screening with filmmakers Barbara Ettinger, Sven Huseby and Ben Kalina.

More information

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Monday January 11, 2010


 

Presentation: Green Renovation of a Warehouse on Witherspoon Street
Monday Jan. 11, 12:00 p.m.

Students in Civil and Environmental Engineering at Princeton University will present results from their design of several features of the green renovation of a warehouse building on Witherspoon St. that will become the offices of the architect, J. Robert Hillier. As part of a course in sustainable design and construction, taught by Robert Harris, the students designed several energy efficient elements of the building, a geothermal heating and cooling system, and a rainwater collection system to supply non-potable water to the building. The students also investigated the indoor air quality hazards of Chinese and North American dry wall and developed emission limits on volatile chemicals that would protect human health.

 

Strong Coffee: The Story of Caf Femenino
Directed by Sharon Bates.
Monday Jan. 11, 2:00 p.m.
Running time: 48 min.

“Strong Coffee” tells the story of Caf Femenino—the first coffee beans grown entirely by women farmers. Remarkably, the Caf Femenino project is helping to change long-established attitudes in remote farming communities. In response, a cultural shift is taking place. There is more equality between women and men, abuse and violence towards women are decreasing, and the quality of life in these regions is improving.

To better understand this phenomenon, a small group of coffee roasters travel to Northern Peru to meet some of the impoverished women farmers who grow this high quality, certified organic, fair trade coffee. The film follows the roasters as they travel to remote villages to see how coffee beans are grown, picked, processed, and sold. We learn about the Peruvian women’s struggles, their courage and incredible achievements, and meet some of the remarkable people involved in the formation of the project.

More information

 

Food Fight
Directed by Chris Taylor.
Monday Jan. 11, 2:00 p.m. 4:00 p.m.
Running time: 83 min.

When we walk into a supermarket, we assume that we have the widest possible choice of healthy foods. But in fact, over the course of the 20th century, our food system was co-opted by corporate forces whose interests do not lie in providing the public with fresh, healthy, sustainably produced food.

Director Chris Taylor reaches as far back as World War II to explain America’s initial tendency toward corporate-owned, mass-produced and flavorless agricultural goods, and examines how this trend has ultimately landed the United States in the unhealthy state it is in today. Fortunately, an alternative emerged from the counter-culture of California in the late 1960s, led by the now-legendary chefs who spearheaded the California Cuisine movement. Notables such as Chez Panisse owner Alice Waters, Wolfgang Puck, Jeremiah Tower and Suzanne Goin are interviewed, with their stories of culinary triumph lovingly retold. The unintended result was the birth of a vital locally-sustainable organic food movement which has brought back taste and variety to our tables.

The film looks at how American agricultural policy and food culture developed in the 20th century, and how the California food movement has created a counter-revolution against big agribusiness.

The film will be followed by a panel discussion called “Farming and Flavor” moderated by Fran McManus, Whole Earth Center and UnderstandingFlavor.com

Panel:
Chris Albrecht, Executive Chef at Eno Terra, Gab Carbone, co-owner and artisan ice cream and confection maker at the bent spoon, J. David Waldman, owner and roaster at Rojo’s Roastery, and Jonathan White, farmer and cheesemaker at Bobolink Farm.

More information

 

Sustainable Princeton Leadership Awards Presentation
Monday Jan. 11, 2:00 p.m. 7:00 p.m.

Come meet and talk to the 2009 Sustainable Princeton Leadership Award recipients. These individuals are living and working sustainably in our community in areas such as green building, healthy eating, buying local and much more!

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Tuesday January 12, 2010


 

Taking Root: The Vision of Wangari Maathai
Directed and produced Alan Dater and Lisa Merton.
Tuesday Jan. 12, 12:00 p.m.
Running time: 80 min.

Planting trees for fuel, shade, and food is not something that anyone would imagine as the first step toward winning the Nobel Peace Prize.

Yet with that simple act Wangari Maathai, a woman born in rural Kenya, started down the path that reclaimed her country’s land from 100 years of deforestation, provided new sources of food and income to rural communities, gave previously impoverished and powerless women a vital political role in their country, and ultimately helped to bring down Kenya’s twenty-four-year dictatorship.

More information

 

Blue Gold: World Water Wars
Directed by Sam Bozzo.
Tuesday Jan. 12, 4:00 p.m.
Running time: 89 min.

In every corner of the globe, we are polluting, diverting, pumping, and wasting our limited supply of fresh water at an expediential level as population and technology grows. The rampant over development of agriculture, housing and industry increase the demands for fresh water well beyond the finite supply, resulting in the desertification of the planet. Wars of the future will be fought over water, as they today over oil, as the source of all life enters the global marketplace and political arena. Corporate giants, private investors, and corrupt governments vie for control of our dwindling fresh water supply, prompting protests, lawsuits, and revolutions from citizens fighting for the right to survive.

More information

 

Renewal
Directed and produced by Marty Ostrow?Terry Kay Rockefeller.
Tuesday Jan. 12, 7:00 p.m.
Running time: 88 min.

The vitality and diversity of today’s religious environmental activists are the focus of this feature-length documentary. It tells the stories of Christian, Jewish, Buddhist and Muslim activists who are combating global warming and the devastation of mountaintop removal, promoting food security, environmental justice, recycling, land preservation, and teaching love and respect for life on Earth are the heart of “Renewal”.

A Q&A follows the screening  filmmaker Marty Ostrow, and Stacey Kennealy, Director of Sustainablity at Greenfaith, New Brunswick NJ. will follow the screening.

More information

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Wednesday January 13, 2010


 

When Clouds Clear
Directed and produced by Danielle Bernstein & Anne Slick.
Wednesday Jan. 13, 12:00 p.m.
Running time: 78 min.

When Clouds Clear is a feature-length documentary that tells the story of one remote community’s radical resistance to a proposed copper mine that would level and destroy their way of life forever. Set in the isolated cloud forests of the northern Ecuadorian Andes Mountains, the film is narrated by the founders and children of Junn who depict how the village’s daily life has been affected by the copper that was discovered beneath their land.

As two invading mining companies become increasingly aggressive in their attempts to infiltrate and control the area, the community forms a united resistance in order to survive. Still, some citizens side with the wealth that the companies promise, causing irreparable divisions, pitting friend against friend and father against son. Suddenly these once-peaceful farmers find them selves thrust into a dangerous world of corruption, splintered households, murder and arson as they fight to protect their land and families.

More information

 

The Cost of Oil
Coulter Mitchell (Director, Executive Producer), Jill Robinson (Producer), Joshua Dukes (Executive Producer), Rebecca Dukes (Producer).
Wednesday Jan. 13, 4:00 p.m.
Running time: 45 min.

The U.S. and world’s increasing demand for oil is driving the price of crude oil to historic highs. The pressure to explore and drill for oil in the Arctic is similarly increasing in order to lower the price of oil. But the potential for lower oil prices is at what cost??”The Cost of Oil” examines the subsistence lifestyle of one Inupiat society in Point Hope, Alaska that may be forever altered, or even destroyed, by exploration and drilling for oil in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas. Captivating images and footage from the Alaskan North Slope set the scene for the native peoples to describe how their cultural heritage, hunting methods, language, and subsistence lifestyle will be affected by offshore oil drilling.

More information

 

Red Gold
Co-directed by Ben Knight and Travis Rummell; Co-produced by Travis Rummell and Lauren Oakes.
Wednesday Jan. 13, 7:00 p.m.
Running time: 55 min.

The Bristol Bay region of Southwest Alaska is home to the Kvichak and Nushagak rivers, the two most prolific sockeye salmon runs left in the world. Foreign mining companies Northern Dynasty Minerals and Anglo American have partnered to propose development of what could be one of the world’s largest open-pit and underground mines at the headwaters of the two river systems. Mine backers claim the Pebble exploration site is the second largest combined deposit of copper, gold, and molybdenum ever discovered, and has an estimated value of more than $300 billion.

Despite promises of a clean project by officials, the accident-plagued history of hard rock mining has sparked deep concern from Alaskans who love and depend upon Bristol Bay’s incredible wild salmon fishery. Red Gold documents the growing unrest among Alaska Native, commercial, and sport-fishermen. It’s a portrait of a unique way of life that will not survive if the salmon don’t return with Bristol Bay’s tide.

More information

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Thursday January 14, 2010


 

Oil + Water
Directed and produced by Seth Warren and Tyler Bradt.
Thursday Jan. 14, 12:00 p.m.
Running time: 55 min.

Oil + Water tells of the thrilling adventures of Seth Warren and Tyler Bradt, two friends and world-class kayakers who drove, petroleum-free, over 21,000 miles down the Pan-American Highway in a retro-fitted bio-diesel Japanese fire truck named “Baby”. The film captures their passion for sustainable living practices and the humor they maintained in the face of many challenges along the way.

 

Addicted to Plastic
Directed by Ian Connacher.
Thursday Jan. 14, 4:00 p.m.
Running time: 85 min.

From Styrofoam cups to artificial organs, plastics are perhaps the most ubiquitous and versatile material ever invented. No invention in the past 100 years has had more influence and presence than synthetics. But such progress has had a cost.

For better and for worse, no ecosystem or segment of human activity has escaped the shrink-wrapped grasp of plastic. Addicted To Plastic is a global journey to investigate what we really know about the material of a thousand uses and why there’s so darn much of it. On the way we discover a toxic legacy, and the men and women dedicated to cleaning it up.

Reprise screening from the 2009 PEFF.

More information

 

Garbage Moguls & TALK: Tom Szaky
Produced by the National Geographic Channel.
Thursday Jan. 14, 7:00 p.m.

Tom Szaky founded TerraCycle as a Princeton University freshman. His company got its start by using worms to compost the left over food discarded by the Princeton University Cafeteria services. The resultant compost, or “Worm Poop” as it became fondly known, was an extremely effective and 100% organic fertilizer, which Tom then packaged directly in used soda bottles, collected from recycling bins across Princeton. Tom took a leave of absence to pursue his dream of starting an eco-capitalist company that actually made money by being environmentally responsible. Now 8 years later TerraCycle is one of the fastest growing companies in the country and runs free ‘upcycling’ fundraisers for over 50k schools and non-profits nationwide. TerraCycle now makes over 100 varied products from a wide range of non-recyclable waste streams such as drink pouches, chip bags, and yogurt cups.

Come watch the pilot episode of TerraCycle’s documentary series, called Garbage Moguls, which aired on Earth Day 2009 to critical acclaim. A full season of the show will air this spring on the National Geographic Channel, but you can get a re-screening of the first episode only at the Princeton Environmental Film Festival. The show will give you an unadulterated, inside look at how TerraCycle literally turns trash into treasure right here in New Jersey!

In “Garbage Moguls” the National Geographic Channel (NGC) follows the team’s unorthodox creative process ” the brain-racking and stress, the silliness and infighting” all working to build a profitable business with products composed entirely of trash.  Once named the “The Coolest Little Start-Up in America!” by Inc. magazine, TerraCycle™ is redefining green business, focusing each day on the next million-dollar idea, even if that means spending hours scrounging through stinky garbage.

A Q&A will follow the screening with Tom Szaky.

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Friday January 15, 2010


 

SHORT TAKES
Friday Jan. 15, 12:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Selection of short films:

Nora!
Directed by Joan Murray. 2009.
Running time: 26 min.

Three decades after opening Restaurant Nora, the nation’s first certified organic restaurant, Nora Pouillon continues to advocate a holistic organic lifestyle and her commitment to living and eating sustainably.

Gimme a Hug
Directed by Geert Droppers. 2009.
Running time: 13 min.

This short documentary shows one of the most mysterious phenomena in the animal world, sharks, and it explores the threats they are facing.

Dream People of the Amazon
Directed by Larry Landsburgh. 2008.
Running time: 32 min.

“Dream People of the Amazon” tells the story of the Achuar, indigenous people who live in a remote and pristine part of the Amazon rain forest in southeastern Ecuador. The Achuar had no contact with the outside world until the early 1970’s.

Today, while still retaining their traditional culture, they are becoming increasingly sophisticated about the world beyond their forest. They know that the outside world is desperate for the oil that lies under their territory. They also know that oil operations have brought environmental and cultural devastation to their indigenous neighbors in northeastern Ecuador, only a few hundred miles away.

Pirates
Directed by Karen Pouye. 2009.
Running time 7:43.

A simple day at the beach with a grandfather and grandson ends somewhere you’d never dream.  This intriguing combination of animation and live action will leave you pondering what will happen if the “pirates” continue to plunder our natural treasures.

Locally Unwanted Land Use
Directed by Kate Balsley. 2009.
Running time 7:20.

The film satirically depicts the production and maintenance of garbage and exposes the ways in which our everyday behaviors contribute to mountainous landfills, smog-filled air, and polluted water sources.

The Garden
Directed by Jason Stefaniak. 2009.
Running time 4:32.

A young girl discovers the majestic qualities of nature in a fast-paced urban environment.

Whales of Gold
Directed by Lucia Duncan. 2009.
Running time 38:30.

Every winter, following the migration of grey whales, tourists, scientists and conservationists descend upon the San Ignacio Lagoon in Baja, California and Mexico; their presence and the establishment of Latin America’s largest biosphere reserve brings profound change to the lagoon’s small fishing community.

Giving Green
Direct by Nick Donnoli. 2009.
Running time 27 min.

A short documentary about the energy consumption of a college and what is being done to offset carbon emissions and environmental waste.

 

Communicating Sustainability
Two short films produced by SECN.
Friday Jan. 15, 3:00 p.m.

Directed by Shana Weber and the Office of Sustainability at Princeton University, the Student Environmental Communication Network (SECN) is a training program for Princeton students in audio and video production around the topic of sustainability. Podcasts and video works produced since 2007 are the result of SECN internships, academic course-work, and a summer intensive training program. The objective of the SECN is to develop a model for student training that can be shared among institutions of higher education to document and distribute student explorations of environmental and sustainability topics important to them:

B.Y.O.B – Bring Your Own Bag
Produced by Princeton University students Anna Zhao, Mimi Onuoha

This short film by Princeton University students explores poetry in waste, specifically the life cycle of a plastic bag and how a NJ company uses waste to make new products. TerraCycle of Trenton is featured. Sponsored by the Princeton University Student Environmental Communication Network.

Sustainability and the Sea – NJ Fisheries
Produced by students Katherine Dineen, Nate Sulat

This short film by Princeton University students takes the viewer on a journey to the Jersey shore to learn about the fate of NJ fisheries and the people who fish them. Sponsored by the Princeton University Student Environmental Communication Network.

 

Milking the Rhino
Directed and produced by David E. Simpson.
Friday Jan. 15, 4:00 p.m.
Running time: 83 min.

“Milking the Rhino” examines the deepening conflict between humans and animals in an ever-shrinking world. It is the first major documentary to explore wildlife conservation from the perspective of people who live with wild animals.

Shot in some of the world’s most magnificent locales, the film offers complex, intimate portraits of rural Africans at the forefront of community-based conservation: a revolution that is turning poachers into preservationists and local people into the stewards of their land.

More information

 

Call of the Killer Whale
Executive Producer Jean-Michel Cousteau.
Friday Jan. 15, 7:00 p.m.
Running time: 90 min.

In “Killer Whales”, Jean-Michel Cousteau and his team travel to both the northern and southern hemispheres as they seek out killer whales in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.

The most complex marine species on the planet, our counterparts in the sea, are the orca, the ruler of the ocean. They are the most widely distributed marine mammal in the world. Their realm extends from the Arctic to the Antarctic. Orcas, also called killer whales, number fewer than 100,000 worldwide, and learning more about them is a global endeavor for Jean-Michel Cousteau and his team of explorers, who travel to both the northern and southern hemispheres as they seek out killer whales in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.

The team discovers that people and orcas share surprising similarities, and even similar needs, and they relate their findings to the captivity and release of Keiko, from Free Willy fame, who captured the world’s imagination and whose survival depended on pioneering efforts to re-introduce Keiko into the wild. Cousteau explains how time was spent un-training the trainers who,?in turn, untrained Keiko for a life outside of captivity. Cousteau stated, “It’s easy to capture a wild creature and put it in jail. It’s nearly impossible to return them to the wild.”

The team also learns how some of the threats to killer whales now intersect with human lives. Intriguing detours in the expedition arise, leading to critical examinations of our environment, of the food on our dinner tables, even of our own health. “What we’re trying to do is to make the connection between humans and nature, comparing humans and orcas,” stated Jean-Michel Cousteau. “They are the dominant species in the ocean. We are the dominant species on land and we all depend on the same thing.”

Call of the Killer Whale” aired on PBS and is narrated by Chris Noth.

A post-screening discussion will feature Andrea Neal, Ph.D. and principal investigator for Project Kaisei and its Marine Debris Expedition Science Team, pictured here (on left) in the tallship Kaisei lab.

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Saturday January 16, 2010


 

Hoot
Directed by Wil Shriner.
Saturday Jan. 16, 10:00 a.m.
Running time: 91 min.

When young Roy moves from Montana to Florida with his family, he ends up befriending two kids who are fighting to protect the home of a group of endangered burrow owls from a real estate developer. This feature film is based on the popular children’s book of the same title written by Carl Hiaasen, with music from producer Jimmy Buffett.

 

Presentation: Wildlife Conservation
Saturday Jan. 16, 11:30 a.m.

Margaret O’Gorman, executive director of Conserve Wildlife Foundation NJ provides an interactive program for children (and all ages) about conservation practices and wildlife in New Jersey.

 

Presentation: Walking Princeton’s Trails

Did you know that right here, in the center of the most densely populated state in our nation, there are thousands of acres of preserved open space? Nestled among the many houses, corporate office parks and busy roads there are miles and miles of trails to enjoy. There are walks that go by waterfalls, hidden sculptures — and even a secret cave.

Writer Sophie Gloveir and photographer Bentley Drezner (with book designer Maria Lindenfeldar) created “Walk the Trails,”  a pocket-sized publication featuring sixteen walks with full color postcards of  photographs that depict the beauty of the open space that has been preserved in and around Princeton. Proceeds from its sales have benefited the D&R Greenway Land Trust and other local land trusts. It is a handy guide to finding and enjoying short and longer walks on the trails.

Sophie and Bentley will present a photo-journey from the book highlighting a selection of trails, from short but extra-special walks, longer distances for serious exercise, walks primarily in fields and “woodsier” walks.

 

Division Street
Directed by Eric Bendick.
Saturday Jan. 16, 2:00 p.m.
Running time: 53 min.

“Division Street” chronicles the ‘green adventure of a lifetime’ – a quest to visit the most remote place from any road in the lower 48 states.  Simultaneously, the film explores the fascinating concept of wildlife corridors, the potential for ‘greening’ our highway system, and the fusion of high-tech engineering with the best and brightest environmental research happening today.

Shot in stunning locations throughout North America including Banff National Park, Glacier National Park, Yellowstone National Park, and the Everglades.

Roads are the largest human artifacts on the planet; they have fragmented wild landscapes, ushered in the ‘age of urban sprawl,’ and challenged our bedrock sense of community. But as the transportation crisis appears to be spiraling out of control, a new generation of ecologists, engineers, city-planners, and everyday citizens are transforming the future of the American road.  “Division Street” is at once a portrait of ancient wilderness and new technologies as well as a call for connectivity, innovation, and solutions to shape the emerging green transportation movement.

More information

 

Dig the Earth
Directed and produced by John O’Keefe and Andy Smith.
Saturday Jan. 16, 4:00 p.m.
Running time: 40 min.

What happens when non-farmers grow corn in the middle of a college campus? In the summer of 2008, students, faculty and staff at Lafayette College in Easton, Pa., put writer Michael Pollan’s book “The Omnivore’s Dilemma” into practice by growing a small corn crop on their campus quadrangle. The film chronicles that project, and uses voices from the Lehigh Valley community to explain the “Corn on the Quad” project’s wider implications—for ecological sustainability, for local communities, and for the future of food production.

A post-screening discussion will feature filmmakers Andy Smith, John O’Keefe and Courtney Bentley.

 

Crude
Directed and produced by Joe Berlinger.
Saturday Jan. 16, 7:00 p.m.
Running time: 100 min.

Three years in the making, this cinma-vrit feature is the epic story of one of the largest and most controversial environmental lawsuits on the planet. The inside story of the infamous “Amazon Chernobyl” case, Crude is a real-life high stakes legal drama, set against a backdrop of the environmental movement, global politics, celebrity activism, human rights advocacy, the media, multinational corporate power, and rapidly-disappearing indigenous cultures. Presenting a complex situation from multiple viewpoints, the film subverts the conventions of advocacy filmmaking, exploring a complicated situation from all angles while bringing an important story of environmental peril and human suffering into focus.

More information

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Sunday January 17, 2010


 

Eating Alaska
Directed and produced by Ellen Frankenstein.
Sunday Jan. 17, 12:00 p.m.
Running time: 56 min.

What happens to a vegetarian who moves to Alaska and marries a commercial fisherman and deer hunter? Join her on a wry search for a sustainable, healthy and ethical meal. Women try to teach her to hunt, teens gather traditional foods, vegans give cooking lessons, she fishes for wild salmon, scrutinizes food labels with kids and finds toxic chemicals getting into wild foods.

With humor and compassion, the documentary “Eating Alaska” shows natives and non-natives trying to balance buying industrial processed foods with growing their own and living off the land in the 21st century. Made by a former urban vegetarian now living on an island in Alaska, it is a journey into regional food traditions, our connection to where we live and what we put into our mouths.

More information

 

Homegrown
Directed by Robert McFalls.
Sunday Jan. 17, 1:00 p.m.
Running time: 50 min.

“Homegrown” follows the Dervaes family who run a small organic farm in the heart of urban Pasadena, California. While “living off the grid”, they harvest over 6,000 pounds of produce on less than a quarter of an acre, make their own bio diesel, power their computers with the help of solar panels, and maintain a website that gets 4,000 hits a day. The film is an intimate human portrait of what it’s like to live like “Little House on the Prairie” in the 21st Century.

 

Call of the Killer Whale
Executive Producer Jean-Michel Cousteau.
Sunday Jan. 17, 2:00 p.m.
Running time: 90 minutes

Jean-Michel Cousteau and his team  travel to both the northern and southern hemispheres as they seek out killer whales in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.

For more information see the listing on the schedule for Friday Jan. 15, 7:00 p.m.

 

At the Edge of the World
Directed and produced by Dan Stone.
Sunday Jan. 17, 4:30 p.m.
Running time: 92 min.

The 3rd Antarctic Campaign undertaken by the controversial Sea Shepherd Conservation Society was arguably “the perfect combination of imperfections” and the actions taken to stop a Japanese whaling fleet were astonishingly reckless and admirable.

The international volunteer crew, though under-trained and poorly equipped, has developed a combination of bizarre and brilliant tactics with which to stop the whalers long-time activist Paul Watson and first-time captain Alex Cornelissen employ an array of strategies in the hopes of finding an elusive adversary in the 370,000 square miles of the Ross Sea.

With one ship (“The Farley Mowat”) too slow to chase down the whaling fleet, with their second ship (“The Robert Hunter”) unsuited for Antarctic ice conditions and with no country supporting their efforts to enforce international law, the situation becomes increasingly desperate in this real-life David-vs.-Goliath adventure.

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