Mice, Madd and Mountains


Lee Quinby and Daniel Cowen's True Delta

From the Blues to glacier degradation to the Italian Alps, this year's Mountainfilm in New York lineup promises to be breathtaking. As John Muir so beautifully (and, yes, a little melodramatically) put it: "Climb the mountains and get their good tidings" for "in every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks." Nothing appears more infinite or reminds us how small we are than standing atop the highest peak in the Canadian Rockies or diving into the greatest depths of the Mariana Trench. Although the vastness of New York City reveals her beauty from time to time, nature is calling.

The Adventurers
Jon Turk joined pro-kayaker Erik Boomer for his first kayak circumnavigation of Ellesmere Island, and nearly died in the process. Join Film Society for Turk’s live talk about the event that earned him a nomination for Adventurer of the Year from National Geographic. Following the chat are three can’t-miss shorts. See it all Sunday at 7:00pm.

"The Blues will never go away, but we are at the threshold of the last of the generations of the guys who were there… when the art form was created," says a character in True Delta about the importance of blues in the fast-paced 21st century. Legendary Bluesman Bill "Howl-N-Madd" Perry and his family will play a short set after the screening. See Howl-N-Madd and much more at 9:30 tonight!


Anne Lapied and Erik Lapied's Voyate to the End of Winter

The Environmentalists
Jeff Orlowski’s debut documentary Chasing Ice follows photographer James Balog to the glaciers of Iceland, Greenland, Alaska, and Montana as he takes photos every hour with two dozen mounted cameras for years, gaining proof that they are rapidly melting. Chasing Ice won awards at Sundance and SXSW and will likely be a strong contender this awards season. Screening tonight at 7:00pm .

Biologist Sandra Steingraber has battled cancer for 30 years. Growing up near toxic discharge from industrial agriculture (The Bay, anyone?), Steingraber asks: How much proof is necessary to treat industrial contamination of air, soil and streams as human rights issues? Compelling, emotional, and informative, Chanda Chevannes’ Living Downstream searches for answers. See it Saturday at 2:00pm.

E-waste is the fastest growing waste in the world (just think about buying a new charger every time the latest phone comes out because your old one isn’t compatible anymore). Filmmakers Isaac Brown and Eric Flagg go to Ghana to film kids taking apart the remains of America’s exported e-waste. Inside that e-waste: Cadmium and Mercury. It’s not an uplifting tale, but erase ignorance by learning where, exactly, your foiled phone ends up and see Terra Blight. Screening with three shorts Saturday at 4:15pm.

Merging environment and adventure are filmmakers Anne and Erik Lapied, who spent a winter in Gran Paradiso National Park. The result, Voyage to the End of Winter, will take your breath away. Screening Sunday at 4:15pm.


Judith de Leeuw's Stuff Everywhere

The Overpopulaters
Big in Bollywood follows actor Omi Vaidya, who was raised in Palm Springs and became an overnight Bollywood sensation with one role. Vaidya’s college friends are the filmmakers, the location is India, and the natural element is the human drive for following one’s dreams. Screening Saturday at 9:00pm.

Is the earth near its human population Critical Mass? When one species gets too big, nature has a way of balancing that out (the food chain, disease, weather). The checks and balances of nature work on humans, too (The Plague, Swine Flu, natural disasters), but it's the kind of thing that's tough to talk about tactfully. Needless to say, humans are living on top of one another and using more than their fair share of the planet's resources, but how can we get a bird’s-eye-view of the situation? Filmmaker Mike Freedman shows us, with mice. What happens when mice are crowded together at levels equivalent to the human population of earth? Find out Saturday at 6:15pm!

Think New York is overpopulated? How do you think your shoes feel sharing that tiny closet with your dresses, pants, coats and shirts? Or your pots, pans, and dishes in the same drawers as Monopoly and chess? Filmmaker Judith de Leeuw decided to count every item she owns in an attempt to discover the connection between people and their things. Stuff Everywhere screens with two shorts: Man Who Lived on His Bike and Living Tiny on Sunday at 2:00pm. "Ultimately you can only occupy 12 square feet of space at a time. Everything else is just a place to keep your stuff."

Mountainfilm in New York runs from Friday, October 19 through Sunday, October 21 in the Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center. Save when you buy tickets to two films together with our Double Feature package!

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