PLANET IN FOCUS ENVIRONMENTAL FILM FESTIVAL September 30- October 5 at Innis Town Hall
The Planet In Focus International Environmental Film And Video Festival is full of food for thought. Workshops, a fair, David Suzuki and 53 films and videos from 13 countries give you the rundown on how this planet works.
The opening gala includes a screening of Cosmic Africa, which details the journey of South African astrophysicist Thebe Medupe as he travels across the continent in search of traditional legends about the stars. As scientific history, it's patchy. As a travelogue, it's beautiful. The American-educated Medupe is enough of an outsider to find every place he visits fascinating, and enough of a local to feel personally implicated in his discoveries. (September 30 and October 3).
Other festival highlights include Returning Home (October 3), which follows 80-year-old performance artist Anna Halprin as she paints herself blue, gets wrapped in hay and reflects on her relationship with nature and her mortality.
Check out Stephanie Boyd's and Ernesto Cabellos's gripping doc, Choropampa (October 4), in which huge multinational gold-mining corp Newmont spills 11 litres of mercury down the main drag of a small Peruvian village, then tap dances gracefully away.
Also intriguing, The Ghosts Of Lomako (October 2) pursues a group of bonobo researchers through war-torn Congo and provides an unblinking look at the hair-tearing ethical complexities of European aid and conservation work in post-colonial Africa.