In the Hodgson Seminar Room (2nd floor, room 200) OR in auditorium, depending on availability.
All films start at 3 PM Films may change without notice due to circumstances beyond our control.
Please note: all films are available for loan through the McGill library system (Redpath Library downtown and/or Macdonald campus).
See you in the New Year!
January 12: Wisconsin Death Trip (1999). Based on newspaper archives of strange and bizarre happenings around the town of Black River Falls, Wisconsin, in the 1890s. This documentary uses historical reenactments. Not suitable for a young audience.
January 19: Where Heaven Meets Hell (2013). This film is about sulphur mining in Indonesia. It has really beautiful scenery, while also exploring the difficulties, poverty, and risks faced by the miners.
January 26: Under the Sea (IMAX 2009). An underwater look at the diverse coastal regions of Southern Australia, New Guinea and the Indo-Pacific areas and the impact of global warming on the oceans.
February 2: Family Portrait in Black and White (2012). This documentary follows an Iranian woman who fosters many children, many of which are black. The woman is very interesting and it is difficult to tell whether she is exploitative of the children, or supportive. This film won the audience award at the Hotdocs 2013 festival in Toronto.
February 9: Weibo's War (2011). Big Oil calls convicted 1990s oilpatch saboteur Reverend Wiebo Ludwig an eco-terrorist and portrays him as a patriarchal cult leader. He calls himself a devout Christian driven to defend his Trickle Creek farm from the deadly effects of toxic sour gas wells. David York takes his camera into the heart of Ludwig’s Christian community to create a powerful film about two decades of conflict. Their footage of confrontations with gas workers and police, and its stark contrast with media reports, raises a critical issue: when politicians and police become sock puppets for private interests, is vigilante action justified?
February 16: Darwin Day presentation. No film.
Vanishing of the bees (2010). Colony Collapse Disorder has brought beekeepers to crisis in an industry responsible for producing apples, broccoli, cherries, almonds and a hundred other fruits and vegetables. This documentary follows two commercial beekeepers as they strive to keep their bees healthy and fulfull pollination contracts across the U.S. They plead their case on Capital Hill and travel across the Pacific Ocean in the quest to protect their honeybees.
March 2: Call me Kuchu (2012). Uganda, a country where over 40 per cent of its citizens are Roman Catholic, has become ground zero in an American evangelical war on the “homosexual agenda.” Enter David Kato, a veteran activist who’s been working tirelessly to repeal his country’s homophobic laws and liberate his fellow gay and transgendered citizens—called “kuchus”—from persecution. Kato’s mission is intensified when a new anti-homosexuality bill proposing death for HIV-positive gay men is introduced. Call Me Kuchu documents the courageous efforts of Kato and his team to overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles.
March 9: Crude, the real price of oil (2009). Three years in the making, this cinéma-vérité feature from acclaimed filmmaker Joe Berlinger (Brother’s Keeper, Paradise Lost, Metallica: Some Kind of Monster) 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. The case takes place not just in a courtroom, but in a series of field inspections at the alleged contamination sites, with the judge and attorneys for both sides trudging through the jungle to litigate. Some of the film’s subjects sparked further controversy as they won a CNN “Hero” award and the Goldman Award, the environmental equivalent of the Nobel Prize.
March 16: The Act of Killing (2012). A documentary that challenges former Indonesian death squad leaders to reenact their real-life mass-killings in whichever cinematic genres they wish, including classic Hollywood crime scenarios and lavish musical numbers.
March 23: Grizzly Man (2005). A devastating and heartrending take on grizzly bear activists Timothy Treadwell and Amie Huguenard, who were killed in October of 2003 while living among grizzlies in Alaska.
March 30: Encounters at the End of the World (2007). A documentary trip to visit the scientists at McMurdo Station in Antarctica, looking to capture the continent's beauty and investigate the characters living there.
April 6: Chimpanzee (Disney Nature, 2011). Journey deep into the African rainforest and meet Oscar, an adorable young chimp with an entertaining approach to life, and a remarkable story of individual triumph and family bonds. The world is a playground for little Oscar and his fellow young chimps who love creating mayhem. Full of curiosity, a zest for discovery, joy and a love for mimicking others, Oscar -- and his family -- navigate navigate the complex territory of the forest. It's an inspiring and life-changing adventure, narrated by Tim Allen, that overflows with courage and charm that will capture your heart. For a smile, watch the trailer here.
April 13: Earth Day presentation. No film.
April 20: Easter. Museum CLOSED.
April 27: The Cove (2009). Academy Award® Winner for Best Documentary of 2009, this film follows an elite team of activists, filmmakers and freedivers as they embark on a covert mission to penetrate a remote and hidden cove in Taiji, Japan, shining a light on a dark and deadly secret. Utilizing state-of-the-art techniques, including hidden microphones and cameras in fake rocks, the team uncovers how this small seaside village serves as a horrifying microcosm of massive ecological crimes happening worldwide. The result is a provocative mix of investigative journalism, eco-adventure and arresting imagery, adding up to an unforgettable story that has inspired audiences worldwide to action.
May 4: Winged Migration (2001). Documentary on the migratory patterns of birds, shot over the course of three years on all seven continents.
May 11: If a tree falls: A story of the Earth Liberation Front (2012). In December 2005, Daniel McGowan was arrested by Federal agents in a nationwide sweep of radical environmentalists involved with the Earth Liberation Front-- a group the FBI has called America's "number one domestic terrorism threat." For years, the ELF—operating in separate anonymous cells without any central leadership—had launched spectacular arsons against dozens of businesses they accused of destroying the environment: timber companies, SUV dealerships, wild horse slaughterhouses, and a $12 million ski lodge at Vail, Colorado. With the arrest of Daniel and thirteen others, the government had cracked what was probably the largest ELF cell in America and brought down the group responsible for the very first ELF arsons in this country. Part coming-of-age tale, part cops-and-robbers thrilller, the film interweaves a verite chronicle of Daniel on house arrest as he faces life in prison, with a dramatic recounting of the events that led to his involvement with the group. And along the way it asks hard questions about environmentalism, activism, and the way we define terrorism.
May 18: MUSEUM CLOSED.
May 25: MUSEUMS DAY. No film.
June 1: Manufactured Landscapes (2006).Photographer Edward Burtynsky travels the world observing changes in landscapes due to industrial work and manufacturing.
June 8: Chasing Ice (2012). In the spring of 2005, acclaimed environmental photographer James Balog headed to the Arctic on a tricky assignment for National Geographic: to capture images to help tell the story of the Earth’s changing climate. Even with a scientific upbringing, Balog had been a skeptic about climate change. Chasing Ice is the story of one man’s mission to change the tide of history by gathering undeniable evidence of our changing planet. Within months of that first trip to Iceland, the photographer conceived the boldest expedition of his life: The Extreme Ice Survey. With a band of young adventurers in tow, Balog began deploying revolutionary time-lapse cameras across the brutal Arctic to capture a multi-year record of the world’s changing glaciers.
June 15: Darwin's Nightmare (2004). A documentary on the effect of fishing the Nile perch in Tanzania's Lake Victoria. The predatory fish, which has wiped out the native species, is sold in European supermarkets, while starving Tanzanian families have to make do with the leftovers.
June 22: MUSEUM CLOSED.
June 29: MUSEUM CLOSED.
July 6: Waste Land (2010). Filmed over nearly three years, this film follows renowned artist Vik Muniz as he journeys from his home base in Brooklyn to his native Brazil and the world's largest garbage dump, Jardim Gramacho, located on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro. There he photographs an eclectic band of “catadores”—self-designated pickers of recyclable materials. Muniz’s initial objective was to “paint” the catadores with garbage. However, his collaboration with these inspiring characters as they recreate photographic images of themselves out of garbage reveals both the dignity and despair of the catadores as they begin to re-imagine their lives.
July 13: The Natural History of the Chicken (2000). Through interviews and reenactments, The Natural History of the Chicken investigates the role of the chicken in American life and tells several remarkable stories. A Maine farmer says she found a chicken frozen stiff, but was able to resuscitate it. Colorado natives tell a story of the chicken who lost its head-- and went on living. A Virginia farmer tells about (and demonstrates) the benefits of raising chickens for his own consumption. Perhaps most surprising is the case of the Florida woman: she bathes her pet bird, and takes it both swimming and shopping. Through these and other stories, this documentary illuminates the role that chickens play in (some of) our lives.