11:40am LNS – 64 min. The Man Who Stopped the Desert

11:40am LNS – 64 min. The Man Who Stopped the Desert


11:40am The Man Who Stopped the Desert - 64 min. - LNS


1080 Films

Director: Mark Dodd

As early as the 1970s, desertification began to creep southwards in the land between the Sahara Desert and forests of tropical Africa. By the 1980s the region suffered from regular droughts and starvation. People fled to the cities and many villages became deserted. Yacouba Sawadogo, a farmer living in northern Burkina Faso, decided he would remain steadfast against the desert. By reviving and adapting an ancient farming technique known as Zai, Yacouba began to grow crops successfully on previously abandoned land. Yacouba’s hardest battle was not with the elements, but with the people around him. On every side he faced opposition to his techniques. Many thought his ideas were crazy. Over time, his successes became legendary.

11:45am SID – 54 min.  The Revolutionary Optimists

11:45am SID – 54 min. The Revolutionary Optimists


11:45am The Revolutionary Optimists - 54 min. - SID


Collective Eye Films

Director: Nicole Newnham & Maren Grainger-Monsen

The Revoluntionary Optimists draws us into the world of two 11-year olds with no access to clean drinking water, a girl forced to labour in a brick-making operation, and a teenage dancer on the precipice of accepting early marriage to escape from her abusive family.  Lawyer turned change-agent, Amlan Ganguly, does more than simply rescue children living in Calcutta’s slums. He empowers them to transform their own neighbourhoods and lives as they organize to get clean water, go to school, reduce malaria infections and learn to dance.

11:45am UNS – 53 min. Bringing it Home

11:45am UNS – 53 min. Bringing it Home


11:45am Bringing it Home - 53 min. - UNS



Directors:  Linda Booker & Blaire Johnson

A father’s search to find the healthiest building materials leads him to the completion of the first hemp house in the US.  Hemp with lime, hempcrete, is a non-toxic, energy efficient, mildew, fire and pest resistant building material. Although it is grown in 31 countries, growing hemp remains off-limits to almost all U.S. farmers.  Industrial hemp is a non-psychoactive plant that provides the raw materials for thousands of sustainable products which can improve nutrition, stop deforestation and offer hope in a time of  global warming.  Bringing it Home tells the story of hemp, past, present and future, and a global industry that includes textiles, building materials, food products, bio-plastics, auto parts and more.

Jury Award, Wild & Scenic Environmental Film Festival; Directors’ Choice Award & Best Environmental Film, Sedona International Film Festival

1:00pm SID – 88 min.  Open Sesame

1:00pm SID – 88 min. Open Sesame


1pm Open Sesame; the Story of Seeds - 88 min. - SID


Director: M Sean Kaminsky

One of the world’s most precious resources is at risk. Seeds are essential to life, providing the basis for everything from fabric to food to fuels. Approximately 90 percent of the fruit and vegetable varieties that existed 100 years ago no longer exist today. Corporations are co-opting seed genetics using patent laws. Today, corporate-owned seed accounts for 82% of the world-wide market.  Many heritage grains are near extinction. Seeds that were lovingly nurtured over hundreds of years have been lost forever. Maintaining seed biodiversity allows us to breed new varieties that are resistant to pests and thrive in temperature extremes in a changing climate. Open Sesame follows the challenges and triumphs of seed activists as they work to save this precious resource.

1:00pm FFR – 85 min. On The Side of the Road

1:00pm FFR – 85 min. On The Side of the Road

1:00pm FFR - 85 min. On the Side of the Road 

Naretiv Productions

Filmmaker: Lia Tarachansky

Tarachansky grew up in Israel’s largest settlement, Ariel. When the second Intifadah broke out in 2000 her family moved to Canada where, for the first time, she met Palestinians and heard their stories. In this film, Tarachansky looks at Israelis’ collective amnesia of the fateful events of 1948 when the state of Israel was born and hundreds of thousands of Palestinians became refugees.  She follows the transformation of Israeli veterans as they uncover repressed memories of the war that changed the region forever. Tarachansky then turns the camera on herself and travels back to her settlement where that historical erasure gave birth to a new generation, blind and isolated from its surroundings. In 2009 the Israeli government proposed a law that forbade mourning this history. Attempting to shed a light on the country’s biggest taboo, she is met with outrage and violence.  

Indie Fest Film Award; International Independent Film Award