"With Glowing Hearts" 2011 72min/52min HD
A Social Media revolution has been building momentum on the Internet for the past five years, and it is creating a new sense of community and empowerment amongst those who have embraced it. History has shown that poor and marginalized communities stand to gain the most from leaps forward in the democratization of information, so the excitement in areas like Vancouver’s maligned Downtown Eastside about the possibilities of Web 2.0 and beyond is palpable. With the Winter Olympics less than a year away, billions have been spent in preparations as Vancouver puts on its best face for the world. Against this background the film examines Social Media in action as a group named Fearless City embarks on a campaign to empower and protect its neighbours with cellphones, video-streaming, and the World Wide Web
"Plastic Bottles" 2009 5min HD
Plastic Bottles is a profile of the work of Seattle-based photographer Chris Jordan , who uses his work to try and help us all get a better grip on the often incomprehensible and overwhelming statistics which describe our modern consumer culture. With his painstakingly created, large scale photomontages Jordan makes visible what a field of 3 million plastic bottles - a number which reflects how many are used every 5 minutes in the US alone - and helps us find a new way to make sense of these numbers. In engaging people in a discussion about the role we all play in contributing to these statistics, Jordan challlenges us to reflect on the idea of personal responsibility in society.
"Critical" 2007 10min 35mm
While martial law rules outside the hospital's walls, its sudden evacuation forces a critical care doctor into agonizing decision about the fate of her patients.
"I wanted to use this film to look at the relative nature of morality, and explore how one's ideas of right and wrong are created and affected by the context in which we live. I don't know if there has ever been time on this planet where life has been simple enough to allow for an absolute morality of any kind, but I certainly don't believe we live in those times now."
Opening selection - National Screen Institute Online Film Festival
"The Lunar Effect" 2008 16min HD
"Never underestimate the power of a beer..."
Every second Saturday of July for the past twenty-eight years the tiny California community of Laguna Niguel sees itself become the host of an improbably recurring event which is popularly known as "Moon Amtrak". Centered around the Mugs Away Saloon and located in an industrial area of town, the festival is inspired by JT Smith's drunken offer to buy a beer for anyone who would come out with him and moon the Amtrak passenger trains which were whizzing by on some nearby tracks. While evolving over the years into a sort of Mardi Gras for the Southern California biker community, the festival has remained curiously friendly to anyone who wants to pull their pants down, and welcomes everyone from grandmothers to newlyweds. Without any central coordination the party now gets upwards of 3,000 people a year, some of whom begin to park their RVs along the route several days early to get the best spots. With a generally well-behaved crowd, the biggest threat to Moon Amtrak's continued survival may actually be something as banal as condo contruction, as the surrounding gated communities look to gobble up more real estate.
"I love the fact that something as unlikely as this festival has thrived for close to thirty years entirely on the strength of its word of mouth reputation. It was great to see the variety of people who felt comfortable coming out and getting naked to various degrees with a whole bunch of strangers in a pretty ugly part of town. Although things do get pretty sloppy there by the end of a long, hot day of drinking, it was still a whole lot of fun."