The VWA presents the Wild & Scenic Film Festival on Tour
The Henry Miller Memorial Library
Big Sur, CA
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The VWA presents the Wild & Scenic Film Festival on Tour
The Wild & Scenic Film Festival focuses on films that celebrate our planet and address threats to its health. "There is a lot of fear around climate change and the environment," says Tour Manager Estrella Acosta. "We believe that choosing to make a film about these challenging issues is an expression of hope. Using the universal medium of film makes these serious topics accessible and aims to find and inspire potential change-makers out there just waiting to use their talents and skills in a big way." Born in Big Sur, Acosta remarks that she is "thrilled to know that the VWA is out there protecting those beautiful wild places that I only get to visit every few years. What a perfect place to host an environmental film festival!"

The Wild & Scenic Film Festival originated with watershed advocacy group the South Yuba River Citizens League (SYRCL) in 2003. The home festival in Nevada City kicks off the national tour to communities nationwide, allowing SYRCL to share their success with other environmental organizations.

This Big Sur appearance will feature music, special guests, and a raffle with great prizes from national and local sponsors, all amid the fantastic redwoods of the Big Sur coast. The festival promises to engage and inspire, and is a natural extension of the VWA's work to empower local citizens to roll up their sleeves and get involved in the stewardship of public lands in the Big Sur region.

This year's films:

A Desert Life
Alf Randell is a self-described "dirtbag" who has spent nearly a decade of his life living and climbing amongst the soaring sandstone cliffs of Indian Creek, Utah.  He has no job, no bank account, and no house save the rickety camper perched atop his pickup truck.  Sometimes climbing is more than a hobby or a priority; it is a calling. A Desert Life is a portrait of a man who truly lives his passion, and a tribute to the enchanting desert he calls home.
(USA, 2012, 9min)

Yosemite Nature Notes - Sky Islands
Throughout California's Sierra Nevada, flat plateaus are found at high elevations of twelve to fourteen thousand feet. These isolated "sky islands" are home to rock gardens filled with amazing wildflowers found nowhere else in the world. Botanists in Yosemite National Park are working to document these unique plant communities before a changing climate drives them to extinction.
Honorable Mention, International Wildlife Film Festival.
(USA, 2011, 7min)

The Summit
High on a mountain, a rope ties together a climber and a mountaineer. They climb or fall as one. Their bond is worn and strained as they ascend a treacherous peak.
Creative Excellence, 5 Point Film Festival.
(Canada 2011, 5min)

Wild Things
Native carnivores balance ecosystems and keep wilderness healthy. But they are also seen as a threat to livestock, and for decades ranchers and government trappers have slaughtered them. The USDA's Wildlife Services program kills a hundred thousand coyotes, wolves and other native carnivores annually. It is a battle against nature that is costly, brutal, and ineffective.  Does the battle really need to be fought? Wild Things introduces audiences to progressive ranchers learning to peacefully coexist with these animals and features scientists, conservationists and former Wildlife Services trappers who believe it is time for a major change in the way we treat our magnificent native carnivores.
(USA, 2012, 39min)

Ernest Wilkerson is struggling to hold onto an independent lifestyle while facing a changing world and his own advancing age. Born in 1924, this humble mountain man cherishes his active life: "I cannot picture myself just sittin' around doing nothin'." A local legend in Monte Vista, Colorado, Wilkerson learned to fend for himself at a young age, becoming a government-hired wildlife trapper, taxidermist, conservationist and teacher of backcountry survival skills. His specialty is snow caves, but he says, "Your best survival tool is your brain."
(USA, 2012, 5min)

Brower Youth Awards: Jacob Glass
Straddling the Idaho-Montana border, the 88,000-acre Scotchman Peaks Roadless Area is one of the largest remaining wild areas in the region. Inspired by the "soaring proud pines, migratory moose herds, and pristine air" of the region, Jacob Glass produced En Plein Air, a film that documents the efforts of Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness, a grassroots group formed in 2005 to secure federal protection for the region. The documentary, by Glass's film company Wildman Pictures, focuses on two painters who use their artwork to convey their appreciation for the mountains. En Plein Air received nationwide media attention and dramatically increased Friends of Scotchman Peaks' membership. The surge of public support for the wilderness designation led to endorsements from many area chambers of commerce and Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer.
(USA, 2012, 4min)

The Water Tower
Three decades ago, filmmaker Pete McBride had the opportunity to climb Linana, the false summit of Mount Kenya. He was 9. He discovered glaciers and became enthralled with this African mountain, the second highest on the continent, which produces 70% of Kenya's water supply. Today, the glaciers are retreating. Some have already vanished. McBride partners with Challenge21 climber Jake Norton and a team of local Kenyans to understand this iconic mountain's vast watershed and see how its transformation is rippling downstream. The journey is more than a climb, more than an expedition. It is a water wake-up call and a physical and symbolic quest to find Ngai, the Samburu people's local water God, who is said to live atop the 17,057 foot "Water Tower".
(USA, 2013, 28min)

Eyes in the Forest: The Portraiture of Jim Lawrence
Follow experimental filmmaker Miriam Needoba in this rare view of British Columbia's remote Selkirk Mountains as seen through the eyes of wildlife photographer Jim Lawrence. Interweaving the startling imagery of Lawrence's still photography with Needoba's sublime cinematography, Eyes in the Forest: The Portraiture of Jim Lawrence is both a restrained study of landscape and wildlife, and a conversation between two artists and their art forms.
(Canada, 2012, 13min)

Song of the Spindle
In this clever animation, a man and a sperm whale debate who is smarter. Each one lists various upsides and downsides of human and cetacean brains, but eventually come to an understanding.
Audience Award for Short Film, Ashland Independent Film Festival.
(USA, 2011, 4min)



The Henry Miller Memorial Library (View)
48603 California Route 1
Big Sur, CA 93920
United States


Film > Festivals
Film > Outdoor

Kid Friendly: Yes!
Dog Friendly: No
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!


Owner: Ventana Wilderness Alliance
On BPT Since: Jul 17, 2013
Ventana Wilderness Alliance