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I have been meaning to tell you all about the Media That Matters Film Festival for some time; I went to see the premier a couple of weeks ago with K and we were both very impressed with a number of the short films. The films showcase important social issues and are designed to raise awareness; the site can then direct you to charities that work to combat the issues being addressed.

I can’t seem to embed the videos here but they are all available to watch on the festival website.

K and I particularly liked The Next Wave, directed and produced by Jennifer Redfearn and Tim Metzger, which tells the story of the Carteret islanders. Their island homes are being flooded due to climate change and they will soon be forced to relocate to the mainland, losing much of their culture in the process. The colors are startling and the film is beautiful as well as compelling. What was most interesting to both of us was that the issue of Global Warming, though at the heart of the film, was never directly mentioned. You were left with a much deeper understanding of the impact that it’s already having without the distraction of innumerable statistics.

The other film we were both especially drawn to was Why Do White People Have Black Spots?, directed by Anya Kandel. The film is simply an interview with a group of young people in Ghana; their questions about Western Society are part of an ongoing dialogue between youth around the world. Some of the questions, like the title question, were funny, while others, such as “why are you rich and we’re poor?” were more focused on the larger disparities. K and I both felt that hearing a variety of questions coming from children was significantly closer to real communication than our diplomats tend to get.

Please check out the films and consider giving a donation to help the efforts of the wonderful people who are working to save the world (it’s splendid that they’re out there as not all of us are of their ilk).

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