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The Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival from the interns' point of view
Friday, April 15, 2011
Blog post by Gena Mangiaratti, Journalism '13, FLEFF Intern, Feeding Hills, MA
On Thursday night, I attended the screening of Peaceable Kingdom: The Journey Home at Cinemapolis. Producer James LaVeck was present, as well as Harold Brown, one of the subjects of the film.
Peaceable Kingdom is a documentary that goes from heartwarming to intense and back as it follows one couple who started an animal sanctuary after becoming aware of an abandoned farm, a couple who turned their farm into an animal sanctuary, and Harold Brown, who also stopped his life-long work as a farmer, to start an organization that raises awareness of issues concerning food.
It's hard to convey the significance of this event because I could tell it affected so many people in so many different ways.
The film opens up with video of sheep in an open field, with one sheep even affectionately head-butting the person holding the camera. Much footage showed what seemed to be almost human-like tendencies of animals, such as hiding their young in reaction to signs of danger.
But other footage was graphic — such as scenes from slaughterhouses. I had to look away a few times. It was at these times when I heard people around me crying.
I think what made this documentary especially powerful and effective was, rather than only serving as an exposé of the inhumane treatment of animals sold for meat and dairy, it also showed an alternative in the animal sanctuaries, and, even more significant, the personal transformations of the farmers who stopped their life-long work after realizing their job did not fit their morals.
To hear testimonials about this film or learn more, visit the film company's website.
Don't forget about the free companion event, “Creating a Peaceable Kingdom in the Finger Lakes,” 2:30 - 4:30 pm on Sunday, April 17 at the Women's Community Building (100 W. Seneca St., Ithaca).