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The Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival from the interns' point of view
Saturday, March 31, 2012
How can the techniques behind shooting film mold the way the audience interprets the film’s intended message? If local spaces are microtopias, then what would the global marketplace be categorized as? These were the main two questions going through my head when watching the film Cotton Road, directed by Ithaca College alumnus Laura Kissel.
The film technique:
The cotton moves; the machinery moves, but the camera is still, like a painting, rather than the rougher shooting seen in many other advocacy films. Kissel explained this was purposeful. She is trying to invite her audience to engage more deeply. She does not want to tell the audience what to think. When you visit a museum you are given the time to interpret the visual. The purpose behind these shots, and their lingering, gives room for this same type of reflection and deeper thought.
The big picture:
Microtopias encompass the idea of sustainability. Yet, I believe the ideals and basis of capitalism will never fit into this same sustainable value because capitalism relies on the idea of surplus. Resources and labor are exploited, not given their actual value or worth, allowing for more money to be made from these products. The image burned into my mind from this film is one of a room full of young Chinese women with coats on diligently working on sewing machines. And it is fact they are not making the minimum wage we see in the United States. Maybe the global marketplace, as is now, would then be categorized as a macro-dystopia? Can a capitalistic society ever be reshaped to fit the sustainable mindset of microtopias? What do you think?
"Is it good; is it bad? I don't know, but we are part of it," said Kissel on consumerism and the complexities of the global marketplace.
Sunday, March 11, 2012
Top 5 Movies to see at Cinemapolis
1. Cotton Road- Systems thinking fascinates me. The idea of globalization and the connectedness of everything together is something I cannot wait to learn more about- especially when I am learning from Ithaca College alum Laura Kissel!
2. Arlit: Deuxieme Paris- This film about uranium mining and environmental racism in Niger completely embodies the beat I hope to cover in my future of journalism: social justice and environmental issues. I am specifically interested in how these issues apply to Africa so this documentary will be super interesting for me! I am also thrilled to introduce myself to filmmaker Idrissou Mora-Kpaï. I want to learn what inspired him to investigate into this topic and her experiences while filming.
3. Veins of the Gulf- I believe we need to acknowledge social justice and environmental justice issues domestically. I think many try to pretend it is not happening in our own backyard, but we need a more local mindset. I am interested to see how this film portrays Hurricane Katrina, an event I have seen covered extensively in media but not through an environmental lens.
4. Bejing Besieged by Waste- Currently, there has been such a focus on China as a growing global economical power. Yet, we don’t think of the impacts this has on the impoverished Chinese people every time we look at a “made in china” sticker. I am excited to see the questions and discussion this unknown narrative provokes at the after parties at the Wine Center.
What movie are you most excited for and why?