By Cassandra West, New Media Access The success of a film festival depends on its ability to inform, inspire and to leave deep impressions long after it's over. That’s the tall order the Film Selection team set for itself in planning the second annual One Earth Film Festival.
This past fall the team began compiling a masterlist of more than 400 films, aiming to get that list down to 25 to 30 feature and short-length films by early January, less than two months before the March 1-3, 2013 festival weekend.
For the 20+ members of the team, the process started with research. Each team member created a “picklist” of 25 films from the masterlist, then read descriptions, viewed trailers and sought out reviews. Films that didn’t immediately grab reviewers were scratched from the picklist. Next, the reviewers generated a “watch list” of four to 10 films they would view all the way through and complete a Film Report Card on each. The watchlist list was further reduced to a “go-list” of the reviewers’ top four films.
Judging by its name, it’s clear the One Earth Film Festival adheres to some pretty specific themes. You won’t find any mindless movies at this festival. Each selection is intended to “educate, raise awareness and inspire the adoption of solution-oriented sustainable actions.”
Films shown at the festival must fit five main areas (energy, food, water, transportation and waste/recycling) and more than a dozen topic categories, such as architecture/sustainable building, environmental advocacy, climate change, social justice. Reviewers also kept a keen eye out for films deemed appropriate for children.
Gloria Ayara, a second-year selection team member, felt strongly that the festival offers films that appeal to young audiences. “Children are a source of inspiration and they have a vision,” she says. “If we pay attention to children when they are showing interest and passion and empathy for the Earth, this world will be different.”
The Results are Worth It
In the end, after all the films have been screened and their messages absorbed, members of the selection team are hoping something meaningful happens – perhaps, said one of the team members, planting the seeds of a cultural transformation to living more in harmony with the natural world.
The fim selection team will present its final selections to the full film fest team at its mid-January meeting on January 17th and a public announcement will follow soon thereafter. To learn more about the film festival visit the Green Community Connections web site's film festival pages.