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April 1–5, 2020

Festival

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Purchase a Weekend Pass and see ALL these great films!


Friday, April 5


5:30pm–7:30 pm • Main Theater

Shorts:
• ON THE COVER (student)
• GREAT WHITE
• FLIN (student)

(Read film summaries here)

Feature:
SHARKWATER EXTINCTION
Rob Stewart
Canada, 2018, 87 min.
PA Premiere

This thrilling, inspiring, action adventure journey follows the late filmmaker Rob Stewart as he exposes the illegal shark fin industry and the political corruption behind it that is leading to the extinction of sharks. 

From West Africa, Spain, Panama, Costa Rica and France, to California, Stewart’s third film dives into the often-violent underworld of the pirate fishing trade to expose the multi-billion dollar industry. Shark finning is still rampant, shark fin soup is still being consumed, and endangered sharks are being used to make products for human consumption. Stewart’s mission is to save the sharks and oceans before it’s too late. TRAILER.

Discussion with Ann Lewis, District Leader for the Humane Society of the United States, working with Pennsylvania lawmakers on a wide range of animal welfare issues, and Director of Planned Giving for the Animal Care Sanctuary
Moderated by Dr. Mariangeles Arce H., Collection Manager of the Ichthyology Department, Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University

Buy tickets to Program 1



8:00pm–10:00 pm • Main Theater

Shorts:
• BIG BOOOM
• GREENLAND MELTS

(Read film summaries here)

Feature:
THE HUMAN ELEMENT
Matthew Testa
USA, 2018, 77 min.
PA Premiere

Humans are a force of nature. As human activities alter the basic elements of life – earth, air, water, and fire – those elements change human life in turn. In this riveting and visually rich drama blending art and science, we follow renowned environmental photographer James Balog as he explores wildfires, hurricanes, sea level rise, a struggling coal mining community, and our changing air supply. With compassion and heart, THE HUMAN ELEMENT highlights Americans who are on the frontlines of climate change, inspiring us to re-evaluate our relationship with the natural world.

This film tells an urgent story while giving inspiration for a more balanced relationship between humanity and nature. TRAILER

Presentation of the “Environmental Advocacy Award” by John B. Kelly III, President of the US Chapter of the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation
Post-screening discussion with Director Matthew Testa
Moderated by Scott Cooper, PhD, President and CEO of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University 

Buy tickets to Program 2


Saturday, April 6


11:00am – 1:00pm • Main Theater

Shorts:
• OUR ALLEY SPARROWS (student)
• BLACK & WHITE WORLD (student)
• THE BLACK MAMBAS
• GLOBAL WARMING SURREAL WILL BE REAL (student)

(Read film summaries here)

Feature:
LOVE & BANANAS
Ashley Bell
USA/Thailand, 2018, 88 min.
PA Premiere

Asian elephants in captivity often endure life as ill-treated service animals. But elephant rescues in Thailand are rare and often life-threatening. A team of elephant rescuers led by world renowned Asian elephant conservationist, Lek Chailert, embarks on a daring 48-hour mission across Thailand to rescue a captive Asian elephant from a trekking camp and bring her to freedom.

This uplifting family-friendly film offers a new way of thinking about this species and shows what can be done to prevent the extinction of Asian elephants. We learn that there’s no need to abuse an elephant to control it. All that it takes is love and bananas. TRAILER

Buy tickets to Program 3



12:00pm – 2:10pm • Black Box
Shorts Program 1

• FIRE FOLLOWERS
• FLIPPING THE SWITCH
• WOLF CALL
• THE FIGHT FOR FLIGHT
• THE GOOD CUP
• 60 MINUETS TOXIC
• THE SCIENCE OF COLLECTIVE DISCOVERY
• LEAFCUTTERS

(Read film summaries here)

Post-screening discussion with Director Catherine Chalmers (LEAFCUTTERS) and Producer Rachel Rooney (THE SCIENCE OF COLLECTIVE DISCOVERY)
Moderated by Rosa Esquenazi-Broid, Fest Juror and Advisory Board Member

Buy tickets to Program 4



2:00pm – 4:00pm • Main Theater

Shorts:
• OR ELSE EVERYBODY DIES
• WHO’S YOUR FARMER

(Read film summaries here)

Feature:
THE NEED TO GROW 
Rob Herring
USA, 2018, 96 min.
PA Premiere

There is alarming evidence that there are only 60 years of farmable soil left on Earth. This film reveals the potential of localized food production and some amazing new inventions to help regenerate our planet’s dying soils and restore the Earth.

THE NEED TO GROW follows the personal journeys of solution innovators as they fight to heal our broken food system and regenerate our planet’s dying soils. TRAILER

Post-Screening discussion with Director Rob Herring and Director Jessica Lingle
Moderated by Emily Moose, Director of Communications and Outreach for A Greener World (AGW), a nonprofit third-party certifier working with over 6,000 farms globally to empower sustainable solutions for agriculture

Buy tickets to Program 5



3:00pm – 5:00pm • Black Box

Shorts:
• GASOLINE, GASOLINE
• CARBON WEEVILS
• ASHES TO ASHES
• EVERYTHING CONNECTS (student)

(Read film summaries here)

Feature:
CURRENT REVOLUTION
Roger Sorkin
USA, 2018, 37 min.
PA Premiere

For decades, the utilities industry has been a driving engine of the US economy, contributing to our progress with a business model that focuses on centralized generation. But now, power companies face a crisis that requires them to capture a new market share to survive in the 21st century. From substations to gas stations, boardrooms to military bases, this film tells the story of America’s energy industry on the brink of massive change.  Whether it fails, prevails or adapts, the outcome will profoundly affect us all. TRAILER

Post-screening discussion panel with Director Roger Sorkin and Emily Schapira, Executive Director of the Philadelphia Energy Authority, moderated by Dr. Patrick Gurian, Associate Professor, Department of Civil, Architectural, and Environmental Engineering, Drexel University

Buy tickets to Program 6



5:00pm – 7:00pm • Main Theater

Shorts:
• BEEBOX
• RIVER OF THE KUKAMAS

(Read film summaries here)

Feature:
PATRIMONIO
Lisa Jackson & Sarah Teale
USA/Mexico, 2018, 83 min.
PA Premiere

In Baja, Mexico, a multinational developer plans to build an expansive luxury resort that will displace the local fishing community.  Faced with encroachment of their natural resources, depletion of the local ecology, and severe pollution, the fishermen band together to take on a multinational giant, challenging their own government, denouncing corruption and demanding justice. 

A heroic story of inspired activism and a community that rallies to defend their land and their way of life. TRAILER

Post-screening discussion with Director Sarah Teale
Moderated by Dr. Mira Olson co-Director of the Drexel University Peace Engineering Program, which bridges science and technology with international diplomacy, development and disaster response to reduce the impact of conflict on society

Buy tickets to Program 7



5:45pm – 7:45 pm • Black Box

Shorts:
• GLOBAL WARMING SURREAL WILL BE REAL
• KITTY CRAG
• MOUNTAIN YELLOW-LEGGED FROGS

(Read film summaries here)

Feature:
SERENGETI RULES
Nicholas Brown
UK, 2018, 84 min.
PA Premiere

In the 1960s, five young scientists explored some of the most remote and spectacular places on Earth – from the majestic Serengeti to the Amazon jungle; from the Arctic Ocean to Pacific tide pools – and discovered a single set of rules that governs all life.  Their surprising discoveries flip our understanding of nature on its head and offer new hope for restoring our world.

One of the most important but untold science stories of our time – a tale with profound implications for the fate of life on our planet. TRAILER

Buy tickets to Program 8



8:00pm – 10:00pm • Main Theater

Shorts:
• NOW YOU SEE IT
• THE BLACK MAMBAS

(Read film summaries here)

Feature:
WHEN LAMBS BECOME LIONS*
Jon Kasbe
USA, 2018, 80 min.
PA Premiere

In a Kenyan town on the border of wildlife conservation land, a small-time ivory dealer fights to stay on top while forces mobilize to destroy his trade. When he turns to his younger cousin, a conflicted wildlife ranger who hasn’t been paid in months, they both see a possible lifeline. For the poachers, conservationists are not only winning their campaign to value elephant life over ivory, but over human life as well. Why do hunters risk death, arrest, and the moral outrage of the world out of a desperate effort to provide for their families?

A rare and visually compelling look into the perspectives and motives of the people at the center of the conservation divide. TRAILER

Presentation of the “Best Feature Film Award”

Post-screening discussion with Director Jon Kasbe
Moderated by Dr. Koren Bedeau, Vice Provost for Academic Programs and Strategic Initiatives and interim Vice Provost for Global Engagement at Drexel University

*May not be suitable for young children

Buy tickets to Program 9



8:15pm – 10:15pm • Black Box
Shorts Program 2

• HEAT DEATH
• REVIVING THE DELAWARE
• NOW YOU SEE IT
• LEGACY
• GIVERS & TAKERS
• SANKOFA, REMEMBERING OUR FUTURE
• A PLACE IN THE GARDEN
• THE LAST GREEN THREAD
• AFTER THE FIRE

(Read film summaries here)

Post-screening discussion with Director Mitchell Smith (SANKOFA) and co-Directors Derek Knowles and Spencer Seibert (AFTER THE FIRE)
Moderated by Kathy Anderson, filmmaker, Fest Program Manager and Juror

Buy tickets to Program 10


Sunday, April 7


2:30pm – 4:30pm • Main Theater

Shorts:
• NOW YOU SEE IT
• DIGNITY AT A MONUMENTAL SCALE

(Read film summaries here)

Feature:
COOKED: SURVIVAL BY ZIP CODE
Judith A. Helfand
USA, 2018, 76 min.
PA Premiere

In July 1995, Chicago was hit by a record heat wave that claimed the lives of 739 residents, primarily elderly African Americans and those living in poverty.  Using this tragedy as a jumping-off point, and referencing other extreme weather catastrophes like Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy, COOKED offers a compelling case that the extreme inequity in economically disadvantaged communities should be addressed preventatively with the same attention and resources provided for natural disasters.

This provocative film reframes the politics of disaster.

Panel discussion with Director Judith Helfand
Moderated by Alex Geisinger,an environmental lawyer and law professor who has worked in the field of environmental justice for over two decades, with Director Judith HelfandEbony Griffin, an environmental justice attorney with the Public Interest Law Center, advocating effectively for sustainable and equitable neighborhoods, and James Crowder, a Senior Associate at PolicyLink, where he works on affordable housing and community development campaigns across the country as part of the All-In Cities initiative

Buy tickets to Program 11



3:00pm – 5:00pm • Black Box

Shorts:
• ON THE COVER
• MOSQUITO METAMORPHOSIS (student)
• GOD HAS ALREADY GONE AHEAD

(Read film summaries here)

Feature:
THE SILVER BRANCH
Katrina Costello
Ireland, 2018, 73 min.
PA Premiere

THE SILVER BRANCH is about one man’s journey through life and his search to reconnect with nature and culture as primary sources from which we learn a deeper understanding of ourselves and our surroundings.  In this bittersweet evocation of the end of an era, an Irish farmer/poet, deeply entwined with ancestral traditions and the natural world, must stand up for all that is sacred to him when the government threatens his way of life.

The viewer is invited to follow in mindful meditation and to take a journey into the self, leading to a deep connection with the Earth and our ancestral wild spirit. TRAILER

Buy tickets to Program 12



5:00pm – 7:00pm • Main Theater

Shorts:
• EVERY NINE MINUTES
• CLIMATE LIARS (student)
• SEROK (student)
• DERRICK POTTLE, KEEPER OF THE FLAME

(Read film summaries here)

Feature:
QUEEN WITHOUT LAND
Asgeir Helgestad
Norway, 2018, 85 min.
PA Premiere

A true story of the meeting between Frost, a beautiful polar bear mother, and a Norwegian wildlife filmmaker over four years. Rising temperatures are responsible for dramatic changes in Frost’s ecosystem as the ice in Svalbard, Norway, is melting at record speed. From complete darkness to the absolute light of the midnight sun, Svalbard transforms from a cold and inhospitable place to a joyous and lively scene of ice algae, fish, birds, and animals. But alongside these seasonal transformations, the disappearing sea challenges Frost’s survival.

This film explores the question “can we afford to ignore this planet that is home to us all?” TRAILER

Buy tickets to Program 13


Special Bonus Offering in the Lobby:

During the festival this year, experience MY AFRICA, a 10-minute virtual reality journey to Northern Kenya, where the futures of wildlife and people are intertwined.

Stand in the midst of a thundering wildebeest migration, witness a lioness snatch her prey, go nose-to-trunk with an inquisitive baby elephant – and meet a community dedicated to saving Africa’s wildlife.  

Courtesy of Conservation International