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San Francisco Green Film Festival Preview

2nd Annual San Francisco Green Film Festival

March 1 to 7
SF Film Society/New People Cinema
1746 Post St.
San Francisco, CA 94115
(415) 742-1394
Free screenings for educators and students

The 2nd Annual San Francisco Green Film Festival offers a range of empowering independent films with new ideas and solutions. Events range from the wild-riding surfer film, "Minds in the Water," to the dark mines of misery and child labor in the Congo, where "Blood in the Mobile" was shot. The festival offers an opening night party that will feature local, organic food and beverages, special guests, a Q and A session for each film, post-film sessions with filmmakers and field experts, filmmaker brunches and special events. Start planning now.

Related: San Francisco International Film Festival.

"Minds in the Water"

Directed By: Justin Krumb
USA, 2011, 90 minutes
Schedule to be announced.

Minds in the Water

This headliner looks spectacular, including international footage shot with professional surfer Dave Rasta Rastovich. He's an Australian whom the festival founder Rachel Caplan describes as passionate, and whom she said she hopes will be at the festival with his film. Minds is about what turns an individual into an activist for animal conservation as Rasta and director Krumb organize to save the whales, dolphins and marine environment from commercial slaughter. Rasta is also a musician, and using an exciting soundtrack that will include the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

"Sushi: The Global Catch"

Directed by: Mark Hall
USA, 2011, 75 minutes
In English and Japanese with English subtitles.

Sushi the Global Watch

This film asks, "Is sushi sustainable?" Although the favorite food has gone global, these filmmakers ask if tuna will survive as a species. We will run out of tuna before we run out of oil, says the filmmaker.

"Waking the Green Tiger"

Directed by; Gary Marcuse
Canada, 2011, 78 minutes
In English and Mandarin with English Subtitles.

Villagers faced with losing their homes because of a massive dam project have nothing left to lose, so they became activists. Director Gary Marcuse said Chairman Mao Zedong's declaration that nature must be tamed in the name of development caused famine after the razing of the forest and killing of animals.

"The City Dark"

Directed by: Ian Cheney
USA, 2011, 84 minutes

Absent city lights, the night sky looks like glitter, but this film asks if urban dwellers and city kids have been blinded by the neon lights. This one features astronomers, historians and lighting designers explaining and discussing the light taken for granted.

"Blood in the Mobile"

Directed By: Frank Piasecki Poulsen
Denmark/Germany, 2010, 82 minutes

Blood in the Mobile

"Blood in the Mobile" is a Danish/German film about how the cell phone industry's abuse of child labor in mines in the Congo. Producer Ole Tornbjerg said:

"I got the idea for the documentary when I was travelling in Tanzania on another assignment. In Tanzania, I heard there was a large trade with minerals from DRC, and that these minerals that ended up in our cell phones were financing the civil war in DRC. I had never heard this before and started doing some research."

Speakers will take questions from the audience at a panel after the film. The panel will discuss green design and emerging green labels as well as innovations in related industries. Email producer Ole Tornbjerg at


Directed by: Patrick Rouxel
France, 2011, 65 minutes

Alma The Film

Director Patrick Rouxel documents what happens to native wild animals when the business world encroaches on nature. Rouxel's multi-award winning "Green" played at the 2011 SFGFF, capturing visually the life of an orangutan in the era of deforestation. In "Alma," he explores the devastating effect of the cattle industry on the Amazonian rainforest in Brazil.

Funding and Volunteering

Film festival founder and director Rachel Caplan says foundations are funding more social-change documentaries, and many indie filmmakers get funding from individuals, crowd funding and micro-donations through Kickstarter and Indigogo. The Green Film Festival is looking for screening sponsors and also needs volunteers including film maker liaisons, publicists, tape checking assistants, festival volunteers to usher and manage will call, as well as volunteers with specialized, applicable skills. See the 2011 films online.

Related: Top Five Bay Area Movie Theaters

Cindy Warner is a freelance writer and a San Francisco Bay Area native. Cindy has covered SF theater and opera for via her bicycle since January 2009. Check out her work on

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