Several people recommended I watch a film that was premiering at the Bagdad Theater this past week. It is titled Deep Green: A Feature Documentary and it was created by a local filmmaker, Matt Briggs, who wrote, produced, directed and starred in this feature-length movie. I took their advice and saw it Friday night and now I’m the one doing the recommending. Everyone should see Deep Green – pure and simple.
It is a message movie about our planet and sustainability. Sure, that’s on my radar, but another reason I’m taken with it is because portions were filmed in Oregon, and I know several of the people featured in this documentary. Matt Briggs, an exotic mushroom picker from Oregon, created this film after years of witnessing the slow decline of Oregon’s forests. Briggs decided he had to take personal responsibility to find solutions to the global warming problem, both at home and abroad, and this led to him to making this documentary devoted exclusively to showing us how to de-carbonize energy and restore the natural world.
A common refrain of climate change deniers is that countries like China and India, places growing and polluting the environment at rapid rates, aren’t doing anything to reduce their own carbon emissions, so why should we? (I know, this sounds like an elementary school excuse to me too…) So Briggs takes us on a compelling journey to nine countries, including China, and highlights China’s surging interest in sustainability and the fact that their government is spending seven times more than ours to combat global warming. Indeed, one of the best things about this movie is that Briggs shows us the diverse methods other countries are doing to conserve, create clean energy, and improve environmental sustainability. He contrasted what Asia and Europe are doing with things we’re doing here in Oregon and other places in America. He featured global clean energy companies such as SolarWorld and his message is clear – we all play a part in fixing the mess we’ve made since the industrial revolution.
One of my favorite parts of this feature included two marvelous short subject animations by the award-winning Bent Image Lab entitled “Trees” and “The Krill is Gone”. In an entertaining and non-preachy way, these shorts warn about the devastating effects of clear-cutting rainforests and burning carbon for energy on the fragile ecosystems within our oceans. The engaging animation sequences used throughout the feature itself, meant to connect with a diverse audience, were quite effective and world-class CG in my opinion.
Oh, and I thought it only fitting that our own Kathy Bash (President of Solar Oregon) had the last word in the movie!
Next viewing opportunity in Portland is Thursday, July 1 @ 7:00pm at the Northwest Film Center’s Whitsell Auditorium inside the Portland Art Center – 1219 SW Park Avenue.
I’m not sure where this movie will be distributed next, but I assume this link to the DEEP GREEN website will have details on when this film will be available at a theater near you. I wouldn’t be surprised if cable TV, such as Planet Green channel, picks this film up and promotes it. And of course there’s always DVD!