FRONTLINE presents “Fire in Paradise”

FRONTLINE presents “Fire in Paradise”

Source:  FRONTLINE

Multiple blazes are currently raging across California — and 10 of the 20 most destructive blazes in the state’s history have happened in the last four years.

New FRONTLINE documentary “Fire in Paradise” goes inside the deadliest and most destructive of them all: last November’s Camp Fire — which burned an area the size of Chicago, destroyed around 30,000 people’s homes, decimated the town of Paradise, and killed 85 people.

From director/producer Jane McMullen, the documentary examines how climate change has contributed to making fires bigger and more frequent, and shares tales of both unfathomable loss and miraculous escape.

The film raises tough questions about who and what are to blame for the Camp Fire’s catastrophic toll.  It traces how the blaze was sparked by a failed power line belonging to the country’s largest energy company, PG&E — which had previously been warned that its transmission towers were aging and components might fail.

Watch “Fire in Paradise” above and read the story at FRONTLINE.


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Eco-warrior and Sea Shepherd captain delivers an urgent message in “Watson”

Eco-warrior and Sea Shepherd captain delivers an urgent message in “Watson”

Source:  Los Angeles Times

Throughout his adult life, Captain Paul Watson has traveled the seas in his trusty Sea Shepherd, dedicating his life to keeping poachers and whalers at bay.

As depicted in Lesley Chilcott’s excellent and urgent documentary, “Watson,” the fierce eco-warrior and founding member of Greenpeace remains one of the most vital voices in the conservation movement.

Though he has been condemned, arrested, and placed on Interpol watch lists for his interventionist style, in the current climate crisis, his approach feels appropriate to the level of emergency.

Watson started as kid in a Canadian fishing village, freeing beavers from traps, and he’s never stopped, cuffing himself to sealing vessels, placing himself in harm’s way to stop whalers and ramming vessels poaching sharks.

“Watson” is playing at the Laemmle Monica Film Center in Santa Monica, California.

Read the story at the Los Angeles Times.


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Meet the diver who documents climate change in the Arctic. She says we’re running out of time

Meet the diver who documents climate change in the Arctic. She says we’re running out of time

Source:  Los Angeles Times

Nearly 20 years ago, Jill Heinerth led a National Geographic diving team that made the first cave dives inside the largest floating piece of ice ever seen on Earth.  The B-15 iceberg had calved from an ice shelf in Antarctica, and they were moved to explore the inside of what was regarded as a potential harbinger of global climate change.

When Heinerth wrote the script for accompanying documentary, “Ice Island,” people cautioned her not to use politically charged terms such as “climate change” and “sea-level rise.”

Scientists recently announced that the polar ice is collapsing faster than predicted.  And every week, the headlines are filled with new warnings of accelerating ocean-level rise.  Heinerth says climate change is happening.  She has dived and documented it firsthand for decades.

Heinerth says how we plan for it and adapt to it in the next few years will determine the future of our civilization.  It’s also what draws her to scuba dive under the ice in the northern reaches of her native Canada.

Read the story at the Los Angeles Times.


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Now Streaming on FRONTLINE: “Flint’s Deadly Water”

Now Streaming on FRONTLINE: “Flint’s Deadly Water”

Source:  FRONTLINE

“Flint’s Deadly Water” is the result of two years of on-the-ground reporting from a team of FRONTLINE journalists — all of them Michigan natives — who set out to determine the true toll of the Flint water crisis.

As it turns out, it’s likely far worse than we knew.

Director Abby Ellis, reporters Kayla Ruble and Jacob Carah, and FRONTLINE Senior Editor Sarah Childress conducted exclusive interviews, pored over thousands of court records, internal state emails and documents, and undertook a sweeping analysis of every death in the county since the city’s water source was switched to the Flint River on April 25, 2014.

What they found reveals how a public health disaster that’s become known for the lead poisoning of thousands of children has also spawned one of the largest outbreaks of Legionnaires’ disease in U.S. history.

Watch “Flint’s Deadly Water” at FRONTLINE.


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“The Great Green Wall” shines a light on one of the world’s most ambitious but unsung initiatives to tackle climate change

“The Great Green Wall” shines a light on one of the world’s most ambitious but unsung initiatives to tackle climate change

Source:  Variety

“Buena Vista Social Club” meets “The Year of Living Dangerously” is how director Jared P. Scott pitches “The Great Green Wall,” an eco-documentary that shines a light on one of the world’s most ambitious but unsung initiatives to tackle climate change.

The film premiered last week at Venice Days, an independent program running alongside the Venice Film Festival.

Executive produced by Fernando Meirelles, the Oscar-nominated director of “City of God” and “The Constant Gardener,” the film focuses on a plan, agreed by 11 African nations in 2007, to plant 8,000 kilometers (4,970 miles) of trees and vegetation across the Sahel, the semi-arid area that stretches the entire width of the continent, just below the Sahara desert.

“The Great Green Wall” will be screened for 150 heads of state at the U.N. Climate Action Summit in New York City on Sept. 23.

Read the story at Variety.


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“Aquarela” is the most metal documentary about water you’ll ever see

“Aquarela” is the most metal documentary about water you’ll ever see

Source:  Vox

Victor Kossakovsy’s “Aquarela” is unlike anything you’ll ever see.  It’s a documentary about water, the role water plays in climates around the world, and how changes in those climates can unleash water’s destructive power.

But none of those themes are narrated in the film.  Instead, we’re presented with about 90 minutes of lengthy scenes and trusted to draw meaning from them — cars falling through melting ice that used to be solid enough to drive across; rolling high seas; icebergs splitting apart; gale-force storms on highways; enormous, breathtaking waterfalls.

Watching the film is less like watching a traditional nature documentary and more like a feature-length music video that roams the globe, without many people onscreen, and no talking heads or explanatory text.

“Aquarela” is playing now in select theaters.

Read the story at Vox.


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