How much outrage can a single multinational corporation inspire? How much damage can they inflict? The breathtaking new film, The World According to Monsanto, features a company that sets the new standard.
From Iowa to Paraguay, from England to India, Monsanto is uprooting our food supply and replacing it with their patented genetically engineered creations. And along the way, farmers, communities, and nature become collateral damage.
Monsanto's controversial past combines some of the most toxic products ever sold with misleading reports, pressure tactics, collusion, and attempted corruption. They now race to genetically engineer (and patent) the world's food supply, which profoundly threatens our health, environment, and economy.
Combining secret documents with first-hand accounts by victims, scientists, and politicians, this widely praised film exposes why Monsanto has become the world's poster child for malignant corporate influence in government and technology.
"Devastating exposé...Will freeze the blood in your veins" -The Gazette
Run time: 109 minutes
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.
Our nation's food supply is now controlled by a handful of corporations that often put profit ahead of consumer health, the livelihood of the American farmer, the safety of workers and our own environment.
We have bigger-breasted chickens, the perfect pork chop, insecticide-resistant soybean seeds, even tomatoes that won't go bad, but we also have new strains of e coli -the harmful bacteria that causes illness for an estimated 73,000 Americans annually.
We are riddled with widespread obesity, particularly among children, and an epidemic level of diabetes among adults.
Food, Inc. reveals surprising and often shocking truths about what we eat, how it's produced and who we have become as a nation.
Run time: 91 minutes
We are rapidly losing the natural resources and human wisdom that are necessary to grow food.
My Father's Garden is an engrossing, emotionally charged documentary about the use and misuse of technology on the American farm. In less than fifty years the face of agriculture has been utterly transformed by synthetic chemicals, whose power to control the forces of nature is rivaled only by that of the atom bomb. These chemicals have also changed the farmers who have used them. This film tells the story of two such lives, different in all details, yet united by their common goal of producing good food.
One of the farmers is the father of the filmmaker. His story is told through her memories of growing up in the orange groves of Florida, and seen in the haunted and fading images of old home movies from the family. Herbert Smith was a hero of his age: dedicated, innovative, a champion of the new miracle sprays of the 1950's. He used these chemicals to fashion a man-made paradise, and his fate is the heart of this film.
The other farmer, Fred Kirschenmann of North Dakota, is a hero for our age. Faced with a shattered farm economy and the devastating environmental effects of chemical farming, Fred steered his land through the transition to organic farming. Thirty years later, the Kirschenmann farm is a thriving testament to ingenuity, hard work, and a reverent understanding of nature.
My Father's Garden follows Fred's story as it unfolds through the changing seasons. The differences between organic agriculture and conventional agribusiness are clearly demonstrated. The issues of farm history, industry, and ecology are all addressed in a simple and direct manner. Beyond the machines and methodology of food production lies another drama, that of Fred's neighbors. In sharp contrast to the robust successes of the Kirschenmanns, these family farms are slowly being erased by market forces beyond their control. The consequences of this loss are sadly witnessed, both for the men and women of the Midwest and for those of us who would eat the food they grow.
More than a cautionary tale, My Father's Garden is a one-hour documentary that tells a story of hope. The memories of the past serve to teach us that we do not have to repeat the mistakes of our fathers. The present is given direction through the explanation and practice of the philosophies of sustainability. Food cannot grow forever on a damaged earth, but Fred's lesson is that we can bring health and beauty back into the Garden, if we are willing to cooperate with nature's infinite intelligence. This wisdom holds the secret to our children's future.
Run time: 56 minutes
Dirt! The Movie--directed and produced by Bill Benenson and Gene Rosow--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."
Dirt! the Movie--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.
Dirt! the Movie is simply a movie about dirt. The real change lies in our notion of what dirt is. The movie teaches us: "When humans arrived 2 million years ago, everything changed for dirt. And from that moment on, the fate of dirt and humans has been intimately linked." But more than the film and the lessons that it teaches, Dirt the Movie is a call to action.
"The only remedy for disconnecting people from the natural world is connecting them to it again."
What we've destroyed, we can heal.
Run time: 80 minutes