From technology, economics, consumption and the environment, to urban design, art and education, politics and media, our film series explores the topics that most intrigue, inspire, and challenge us today.
• Screenings held monthly
• Guest speakers, panel discussions & educational activities at select films
• It all happens at the Midtown Art Cinema
• All tickets available through Eventbrite
Series debuts June 19th with Surviving Progress, a stunning documentary from Executive Producer Martin Scorsese about nothing less than the history of the modern world and the fate of civilization.
TICKETSSeating is limited and each film will be shown only once, so please reserve your spot in advance. Prices vary per event, but our goal is to host as many free &/or low cost screenings as possible. To receive immediate notification on availability of tickets, please join our mailing list.
LOCATIONLandmark Midtown Art Cinema | Map It
931 Monroe Drive NE
Atlanta, GA 30308
CURRENT SCHEDULE6/19 Surviving Progress
8/21 In Organic We Trust GET TICKETS
SUMMER/FALL 2012 LINE-UP
Ronald Wright, whose best-seller A Short History Of Progress inspired this film, reveals how civilizations are repeatedly destroyed by "progress traps"—alluring technologies that serve immediate needs, but ransom the future. In the past, we could use up a region's resources and move on. But if today's global civilization collapses from over-consumption, that's it—we have no back-up planet.
"RIVETING. As the filmmakers trace the evolution of the concept of debt, the ways in which technology both created and destroyed empires (Greek, Roman, Mayan) throughout history, and how the 1 percent have hoarded and controlled resources since we left the caves, the film trots out a who's-who of great thinkers—Jane Goodall, Stephen Hawking, Margaret Atwood, assorted scientists and historians—who are riveting as they walk us through the question of whether we will or can survive progress." - ERNEST HARDY, SEATTLE WEEKLY
What will it really take, to go from the energy that built our world, to the energy that will shape our future? Switch takes us on a spectacular journey through the world's leading energy sites, from coal to solar, oil to biofuels, as we discover the realities of energy today, investigate the challenge of transitioning to alternatives, and get straight answers from international experts to discover the path to our energy future. Our guide, Dr. Scott Tinker, brings a visionary understanding of energy and its relationship to economy and environment, and lays out a plan that is both surprisingly and remarkably pragmatic.
We can no longer stomach our food system. It's killing more and more Americans and costing billions in health care. 73% of Americans eat some organic food because they think it's healthier. But is organic really better for us or is it just a marketing scam? When corporations went into the business and "organic" became a brand, everything changed. The philosophy and the label grew apart. Can gummy bears or bananas flown halfway across the world truly be organic? In Organic We Trust is an eye-opening documentary that looks beyond organic for practical solutions for me and you. Local farmers' markets, school gardens, and urban farms are reconnecting us with our food and transforming how we eat. Change is happening from the soil up.
The Pruitt-Igoe Myth: an Urban History is a film about the profound ways the American city changed in the 20th century, and how these changes have been misunderstood. It began as a housing marvel. Two decades later, it ended in rubble. But what happened to those caught in between? This film tells the story of the transformation of the American city in the decades after World War II, through the lens of the infamous Pruitt-Igoe housing development and the St. Louis residents who called it home. At the film's historical center is an analysis of the massive impact of the national urban renewal program of the 1950s and 1960s, which prompted the process of mass suburbanization and emptied American cities of their residents, businesses, and industries. Those left behind in the city faced a destitute, rapidly de-industrializing St. Louis, parceled out to downtown interests and increasingly segregated by class and race. The residents of Pruitt-Igoe were among the hardest hit. Their gripping stories of survival, adaptation, and success are at the emotional heart of the film. The domestic turmoil wrought by punitive public welfare policies; the frustrating interactions with a paternalistic and cash-strapped Housing Authority; and the downward spiral of vacancy, vandalism and crime led to resident protest and action during the 1969 Rent Strike, the first in the history of public housing. And yet, despite this complex history, Pruitt-Igoe has often been stereotyped. The world-famous image of its implosion has helped to perpetuate a myth of failure, a failure that has been used to critique Modernist architecture, attack public assistance programs, and stigmatize public housing residents. The Pruitt-Igoe Myth seeks to set the historical record straight. To examine the interests involved in Pruitt-Igoe's creation. To re-evaluate the rumors and the stigma. To implode the myth.
This must see documentary is an eye-catching look into the billions of pounds of food that is thrown out each year in the US. Inspired by a curiosity about our country's careless habit of sending food straight to landfills, the multi award-winning documentary DIVE! follows filmmaker Jeremy Seifert and friends as they dumpster dive in the back alleys and gated garbage receptacles of Los Angeles' supermarkets. In the process, they salvage thousands of dollars worth of good, edible food - resulting in an eye-opening documentary that is equal parts entertainment, guerilla journalism and call to action.
In this David and Goliath story for the 21st century, a group of proud Scottish homeowners take on a celebrity tycoon. At stake is one of Britain's very last stretches of wilderness. Billionaire Donald Trump has bought up thousands of acres on the northeast coast of Scotland to build two golf courses, a 450-room hotel and 1,500 luxury homes, he just needs to buy out a few more locals to make the deal come true. Trouble is, the land he has purchased occupies one of Europe's most environmentally sensitive stretches of coast - the equivalent of Scotland's Amazon rain forest. And a handful of the local residents don't want it destroyed. After the government overturns its own environmental laws to give Trump the green light to build his golf resort on an untouched Scottish coastline, the stage is set for an extraordinary summer of discontent, as the bulldozers spring into action. Water and power is cut off, land disputes erupt, and some residents have thousands of tons of earth piled up next to their homes. Funny, inspiring and heartbreaking in turns, You've Been Trumped is both an entertaining, can't-believe-it's-true tale and an environmental parable for our celebrity driven times. A moving score features music by jónsi, acclaimed musician and frontman of Sigur Rós. The film also offers a rare and revealing glimpse of the unfiltered Donald Trump.
Miss Representation explores how the media's misrepresentations of women have led to the underrepresentation of women in positions of power and influence. Like drawing back a curtain to let bright light stream in, this film uncovers a glaring reality we live with every day but fail to see. Written and directed by Jennifer Siebel Newsom, Miss Representation challenges the media's limited and often disparaging portrayals of women and girls, which make it difficult for women to achieve leadership positions and for the average woman to feel powerful herself. In a society where media is the most persuasive force shaping cultural norms, the collective message that our young women and men overwhelmingly receive is that a woman's value and power lie in her youth, beauty, and sexuality, and not in her capacity as a leader. While women have made great strides in leadership over the past few decades, the United States is still 90th in the world for women in national legislatures, women hold only 3% of clout positions in mainstream media, and 65% of women and girls have disordered eating behaviors. Stories from teenage girls and provocative interviews with politicians, journalists, entertainers, activists and academics, like Condoleezza Rice, Nancy Pelosi, Katie Couric, Rachel Maddow, Margaret Cho, Rosario Dawson and Gloria Steinem build momentum as Miss Representation accumulates startling facts and statistics that will leave the audience shaken and armed with a new perspective.
If A Tree Falls: A Story of the Earth Liberation Front explores the tumultuous period from 1995 until early 2001 when environmentalists were clashing with timber companies and law enforcement, and the word "terrorism" had not yet been altered by 9/11. In December 2005, Daniel McGowan was arrested by Federal agents in a nationwide sweep of radical environmentalists involved with the Earth Liberation Front-a group the FBI has called America's "number one domestic terrorism threat." Charged with burning down two timber facilities years earlier, McGowen faced life in prison for his actions. For years, the ELF-operating in separate anonymous cells without any central leadership-had launched spectacular arsons against dozens of businesses they accused of destroying the environment: timber companies, SUV dealerships, wild horse slaughterhouses, and a $12 million ski lodge at Vail, Colorado. With the arrest of Daniel and thirteen others, the government had cracked what was probably the largest ELF cell in America and brought down the group responsible for the very first ELF arsons in this country. If A Tree Falls tells the remarkable story of the rise and fall of this ELF cell, by focusing on the transformation and radicalization of one of its members. Part coming-of-age tale, part cops-and-robbers thriller, the film interweaves a verite chronicle of Daniel on house arrest as he faces life in prison, with a dramatic recounting of the events that led to his involvement with the group. And along the way it asks hard questions about environmentalism, activism, and the way we define terrorism.
World Peace and other 4th-Grade Achievements interweaves the story of John Hunter, a teacher in Charlottesville, Virginia, with his students' participation in an exercise called the World Peace Game. The game triggers an eight-week transformation of the children from students of a neighborhood public school to citizens of the world. The film traces how Hunter's unique teaching career emerges from his own diverse background. An African-American educated in the segregated schools of rural Virginia, where his mother was his 4th grade teacher, he was selected by his community to be one of seven students to integrate a previously all-white middle school. After graduation, he traveled extensively to China, Japan, and India, and his exposure to the Ghandian principles of non-violence led him to ask what he could do as a teacher to work toward a more peaceful world. Hunter teaches the concept of peace not as a utopian dream but as an attainable goal to strive for, and he provides his students with the tools for this effort. The children learn to collaborate and communicate with each other as they work to resolve the Game's conflicts. They learn how to compromise while accommodating different perspectives and interests. Most importantly, the students discover that they share a deep and abiding interest in taking care of each other. World Peace and Other 4th-Grade Achievements inspires others by documenting the unheralded work of a true peacemaker.
A short documentary about bike messengers in Brussels, the most congested city in Europe with only 4% cycling traffic.
In the very near future, the majority of mankind will abandon the countryside and live entirely in cities. Norman Foster, one of the world's premier architects, offers some striking solutions to the problems that this historic event will create. The film traces Foster's unending quest to improve the quality of life through design. Portrayed are Foster's origins and how his dreams and influences inspired the design of emblematic projects such as the largest building in the world Beijing Airport, the Reichstag, the Hearst Building in New York and works such as the tallest bridge ever in Millau France.
American Teacher tells the collective story by and about those closest to the issues in our educational system-the 3.2 million teachers who spend every day in classrooms across the country. The film spent a year following the day-to-day lives of four teachers living and working in disparate urban and rural areas across the county. A mix of personal stories, interviews with policy experts and students, and animated facts and statistics by Stefan Nadelman all highlight the big sacrifices made by our nation's educators, and how these demanding costs force many of our greatest teachers out of the profession. There is a real and imminent crisis in our education system-how little we value our strongest, most committed, and most effective teachers, and the ripple effect this has on how our children learn and their potential for future success. Matt Damon narrates.
A Fierce Green Fire is the first big-picture exploration of the environmental movement. The film takes on environmentalism as a whole, documenting the movement through five acts spanning fifty years - five of the most dramatic events and people, each emblematic of an era. From eco-warrior sinking whaling ships to housewives taking hostages, the stories are surprising, tragic and inspiring. Narrated by Robert Redford and rich with archival footage - glorious, vivid film compiled from over 100 sources - A Fierce Green Fire captures the events in all their immediacy and passion, and the overall energy, expansiveness and extremes of the movement, giving the viewer an understanding of environmentalism like nothing before.