Two Birds Film

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Look & See: A Portrait of Wendell Berry

Filmed across four seasons in the farming cycle, LOOK & SEE blends observational scenes of farming life, interviews with farmers and community members with evocative, carefully framed shots of the surrounding landscape. Thus, in the spirit of Berry’s agrarian philosophy, Henry County itself will emerge as a character in the film - a place and a landscape that is deeply interdependent with the people that inhabit it.

THE UNFORESEEN

The politics behind the environmental movement is the subject of this acclaimed, award-winning documentary from director Laura Dunn and executive producers Terrence Malick and Robert Redford. Framed by an extended poetic narration read by agrarian writer Wendell Berry (LOOK & SEE.) In the 1980s, at the height of the Reagan era, developer Gary Bradley came to Austin, Texas to capitalize on the city's expansive population growth. His ambitious plan called for the transformation of four thousand acres of pristine hill country into one of the state's largest and fastest-selling subdivisions. When residents discovered the development threatened Barton Springs, a much-beloved naturally spring-fed swimming hole and fragile limestone aquifer, the community decided to fight back, sparking one of the nation's earliest and most important environmental movements. It was an extraordinary win, but one that would be short-lived. This engrossing, beautifully crafted documentary intimately chronicles the ensuing political battle (a masterfully orchestrated campaign by Dick Brown, one of the state's most powerful lobbyists) that would lead to the defeat of Ann Richards and the election of newcomer George W. Bush.

Featuring interviews with Gary Bradley, Dick Brown, Robert Redford, Willie Nelson, Ann Richards and economist William Greider, among many others, THE UNFORESEEN links one community's struggle to protect its natural resources to a larger examination of economic development, urban sprawl, environmental sustainability and the American dream.

WINNER OF THE INDEPENDENT SPIRIT AWARD

GREEN

IN THE 100 MILES BETWEEN BATON ROUGE AND NEW ORLEANS...
there are over 150 petrochemical plants which are responsible for producing 25% of the nation’s petrochemicals. This area reports the highest concentration of toxic emissions to the air, land and water in the country. The residents of this area, who are mainly African American and poor, suffer from astronomical rates of cancer, asthma and other medical ailments.

GREEN documents this environmental injustice: the disproportionate toxic development in areas populated by minorities and low income groups. The film journeys through six communities, see map, showing how one group of people may be bearing the burden for a nation’s consumerism.

WINNER 2001 STUDENT ACADEMY AWARD

Become the Sky

BECOME THE SKY maps an ecology of power spanning 4,000 miles across Texas. From offshore oil-rigs to the mouth of the Rio Grande, BECOME THE SKY weaves a web of energy and politics in the context of war–and capitalism. West Texas wind-farms. Enron. LBJ. Gulf War. Traffic. Permaculture. Comanche Peak Nuclear Power Plant. Padre Island National Seashore. Cheney’s energy plan. Pantex. OPEC. Houston Ship Channel. Childress Cotton Farmers. Longhorn Pipeline. Supply & Demand. Solar Eclipse. Election 2000. Napalm. The lunar cycle. Port Arthur. US Fish & Wildlife Service

Like Sun Tzu’s The Art of War, Dunn’s new film is “a loosely linked set of observations and models, with only the barest argumentation connecting them. It does not develop its doctrines through logical demonstration. Rather, it teaches by analogy and metaphor. We cannot simply pluck its insights and drop them into our already existing frameworks. We must develop new ways to use our minds."

NOMINATED FOR STUDENT ACADEMY AWARD.

Subtext of a Yale Education

SUBTEXT chronicles two years in labor relations at Yale through the director’s point of view. Dunn, a junior at Yale when the conflict ensues, interviews workers, administrators, students and professors in an effort to make sense of the dissonance on campus. The film opens with Freshman invocation intercut with a custodian cleaning a dorm bathroom.The main thesis of the piece is revealed through these interviews: corporate influences on higher education are rendering a generation apathetic to the plight of poor people. The film culminates with Yale’s 295th Commencement. As graduates march in cap and gown, Jesse Jackson marches in protest with the unions and 5,000 supporters from around the country.

The epilogue conveys that although Dunn receives her education, the unions face setbacks as subcontracting is introduced into the workforce.

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  • Look & See: A Portrait of Wendell Berry

    1 video

    LOOK & SEE revolves around the divergent stories of several residents of Henry County, Kentucky who each face difficult choices that will dramatically reshape their relationship with the land and their community.

    In 1965, Wendell Berry returned home to Henry County, where he bought a small farm ...

  • The Unforeseen
    3 videos

    The Unforeseen

    3 videos

    Directed by Laura Dunn and executive produced by Terrence Malick and Robert Redford, "The Unforeseen" was called "The best film of [2007 Sundance Film] festival, hands down." by Gavin Smith of Film Comment.

    Winner of the 2008 Independent Spirit award.

    Released by Two Birds Film, Despair.com, C...

  • GREEN
    1 video

    GREEN

    1 video

    Winner of the Student Academy Award.

    In the 100 miles between Baton Rouge and New Orleans, there are over 150 petrochemical plants that are responsible for producing 25% of the nation’s petrochemicals. This area reports the highest concentration of toxic emissions to the air, land, and water in...

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