Films

The films selected for IWFF 40 are tackle a whole spectrum of environmental and wildlife issues – from the history behind caviar to kid’s hunting their own food. We are also featuring retrospectives from legends John Heminway and Alan Root.

CLICK HERE to Buy tickets for single films, All-Access, All-Screening and 5-punch passes

 

AN ACQUIRED TASTE – 60 min.

Saturday, April 22nd, 2:30P, Purchase Tickets

Vanessa LeMaire

Why kill your own food? A new mindful generation of teens defies factory farming and turns to hunting as a way of connecting with the source of their sustenance. They are part of a new urban movement in the United States: locavore hunters. Nick, Alex and Ashlie leave behind their modern lives and embark on a journey that is foreign to their parents. To make a humane kill, these animal lovers confront tormenting ethics and their worst nightmares, partly to eat dinner, and partly to carve out their own identities in a world increasingly at odds with reality and nature.

 

THE AFRICA PASSION – 54 min.

Wednesday, April 19th, 7P, Purchase Tickets

John Heminway Retrospective

“As soon as I was beached in Africa I found what I had lacked in myself. Thus, drowned in dust, whiplashed by heat, scared sick by lions, I learned I was far from complete. I saw that souls and not just bodies suffer and adjust and swell in a sequence not dissimilar from Darwin’s Laws of Natural Selection. Because of Africa I came to accept that I would always be on the drawing boards, forever thirsty on a plain that reaches for the Southern Cross.” – John Heminway

 

ARCHIVES OF EXTINCTION – 12 min.

Friday, April 21st, 3:45P, Purchase Tickets

Plays as part of Shorts: Blue Planet

Alyse Takayesu

Throughout the 19th century, scientists transformed living birds into dried, stuffed, and otherwise preserved scientific specimens. Today, scientists seek to transform these lifeless specimens into living birds through the emerging science of de-extinction. Exploring these transformations, Archives of Extinction evokes questions about de-animating and re-animating forms of life and about the human role in disassembling past and reassembling future ecologies.

 

BEING HEAR – 10 min.

Sunday, April 16th, 11:30A, Purchase Tickets

Wednesday, April 19th, 3P, Purchase Tickets

Palmer Morse

Filmmaker in attendance

Gordon Hempton is an Emmy Award winning nature sound recordist and acoustic ecologist from Joyce, Washington. For a vast majority of his life he has traveled all over the world in search of sound. In recent years, an ever increasing intrusion of noise pollution from human activity has interfered with his work. Being Hear is a short ten-minute documentary about Gordon, his work, and his thoughts about the epidemic extinction of quiet places on Earth due to this noise pollution. The film takes place on the Olympic Peninsula, the largest coniferous forest and only rainforest in the continental United States. It also features his world renowned and award-winning sound recordings.

 

BIRDING BLIND – 11 min.

A 3 screen installation up Wednesday April 19th and Thursday April 20th at Le Petit -129 S 4th St W. And Friday April 21st at the Montana Natural History Center -120 Hickory St # A.  

Katie Mullen

This is an immersive 3-channel installation piece meant to share the experience of watching birds. Each video out of the three frames will be seen through minimalist, square framed mesh blinds to signify the meditative, mind wandering qualities experienced while birdwatching. If projectors and space are not available, the piece can be viewed as is on a single screen.

 

BONES OF TURKANA – 78 min.

Thursday, April 20th, 6:30P, Purchase Tickets

John Heminway Retrospective

The astonishing life of Richard Leakey — paleoanthropologist, conservationist, statesman, provocateur & will be the subject of an hour-long special from National Geographic, Bones of Turkana. The program investigates four decades of exploration and discovery around Northern Kenya’s Lake Turkana, which have given rise to both breakthroughs and controversy in the contentious field of human evolution.

 

BOYZ-SHAN BOI-DEN (Buffalo Return) – 9 min.

Wednesday, April 19th, 6P, Free

Shown in conjunction with the special event Amy Martin’s Threshold: The Anatomy of a Wildlife Podcast

Colin Ruggiero

Filmmaker in attendance

Bison were nearly exterminated across North America. Thanks to the Shoshone tribe, the National Wildlife Federation and the coordinated efforts of a host of other individuals and organizations, bison have finally been brought back to the Wind River Indian Reservation and a landscape that they once defined.

 

CAVIAR DREAMS – 15 min.

Monday, April 17th, 4P, Purchase Tickets

Sponsored by Good Food Store

Brian Gersten

Over the centuries caviar was strictly reserved for Russian Czars and royalty throughout the world. Nowadays it’s become synonymous with wealth, fame, and indulgence. But why is that? What’s so special about caviar? “Caviar Dreams” delves into the complex world of caviar, weaving a tapestry of caviar tales that leaves you knowing more than you ever thought possible about this unique delicacy. Beyond the assumed glamour and luxury associated with caviar, we uncover a story about over-fishing, poaching, near extinction, and a quest for sustainability.

 

CHASING CORAL – 93 min.

Saturday, April 15th, 7P, Purchase Tickets

Tuesday, April 18th, 8:30P, Purchase Tickets

Jeff Orlowski

Filmmakers in attendance

Sponsored by Missoula Federal Credit Union. 

Chasing Coral taps into the collective will and wisdom of an ad man, a self-proclaimed coral nerd, top-notch camera designers, and renowned marine biologists as they invent the first time-lapse camera to record bleaching events as they happen. Unfortunately, the effort is anything but simple, and the team doggedly battles technical malfunctions and the force of nature in pursuit of their golden fleece: documenting the indisputable and tragic transformation below the waves. With its breathtaking photography, nail-biting suspense, and startling emotion, Chasing Coral is a dramatic revelation that won’t have audiences sitting idle for long.

 

CHROME – 12 min.

Friday, April 21st, 3:45P, Purchase Tickets

Plays as part of Shorts: Blue Planet

Jeremy Roberts

Filmmaker in attendance

In the immortal words of fly fishing luminary Tim Romano, a steelhead is “a trout that lives in the ocean … it’s a bad-ass fish.” Back in September, six intrepid anglers – Tom Rosenbauer, Kate Taylor, Dylan Tomine, Hannah Belford, Todd Tanner and Tim Romano – hooked up on a remote North American steelhead river known for its incredible scenic beauty and fantastic fishing. CHROME condenses their five-day adventure into eleven epic minutes. It also examines the looming threat that climate change and ocean acidification pose to our steelhead & salmon.

 

CRAZY MONSTER BUGS – 46 min.

Wednesday, April 19th, 7:30P, Purchase Tickets

Plays as part of A National Wildlife Federation Panel: An Evening of Backyard Bugs

Thursday, April 20th, 2:45P, Purchase Tickets

Mevisha Reddy

There’s an alien world around our feet. Over half a billion years they’ve evolved bizarre behavior, crafty weapons and disgusting habits. We visit the vile, the weird and the small, before we reveal the biggest freak of them all. Flesh-eating venom, skin crawling creeps, and deadly predator swarms will make you squeal in horror-delight. Come meet the Crazy Monster Bugs!

 

DAVID ATTENBOROUGH’S LIGHT ON EARTH – 52 min.

Friday, April 21st, 7:45P, Purchase Tickets

Monika Zalega

The spectacular and magical light produced by glowworms, fireflies and luminous plankton is known as bioluminescence – light made by living creatures. But those quite familiar glows and flashes are just a tiny, easily observed fragment of a previously unexplored, mysterious realm. The sea at night sparkles, as millions of luminous plankton reveal the shapes of dolphins in a truly magical light show. But why do animals produce light of their own? For centuries, we could only marvel at the beauty and the mystery. But now, for the first time we can begin to reveal the amazing truth about living lights. Sir David Attenborough will be our guide, as we venture into a world he describes as “utterly unlike our own”. He and a team of the world’s leading scientists take us on a quest into the fascinating realm of living light.

 

DEATH OF A GIANT – 5 min.

Wednesday, April 19th, 4P, Purchase Tickets

Nina Constable

Death of a Giant documents the aftermath of the killing of an elephant with two young calves.

 

DEEP OCEAN: LIGHTS IN THE ABYSS – 52 min.

Thursday, April 20th, 6P, Purchase Tickets

Yukuri Hayashi

The NHK team that captured the world’s first footage of a live giant squid is going on a new deep-sea adventure. The destination is an illuminating “twilight zone” in a huge submarine canyon in Monterey Bay, North America. Equipped with a 4K camera system designed by NHK specifically for deep sea filming on state-of-the-art submarines, the crew encounters a world of countless exotic creatures including sparkling jellyfish, and deep-sea fish that emit flashes. This is the world’s first quest to film bioluminescent creatures in their natural environment in the deep fathom of our oceans. Observe the amazing mystery of these enlightening life forms that have survived harsh pitch-black environments, where the concept of “sunlight” does not exist.

 

DIVE ONE – 4 min.

Saturday, April 22nd, 2:30P, Purchase Tickets

Alex Finden

Filmmaker in attendance

A love story about a diver and the ocean, Dive One uses wildlife imagery and music to illustrate the evolution of emotions experienced by a first-time SCUBA diver.

 

EARTH CHALLENGE DOC FUSION – 66 min.

Friday, April 21st, 5:45P, Purchase Tickets

Filmmakers in attendance

Filmmakers from around the world were invited to make a short 4-7 minute documentary under an assigned environmental theme and a given topic for Fusion’s Project Earth Doc Challenge. The winner’s from this challenge will show at IWFF.

 

EEYA – 5 min.

Friday, April 21st, 4P, Purchase Tickets

Saturday, April 22nd, 12:30P, Purchase Tickets

Mariah Wilson

Filmmaker in attendance

Eeya is the Baka word for elephant, an animal that is an important figure in the lives of the indigenous Baka tribes of Central Africa. The Baka are thought of as “scientists of the forest” – the forest provides them with everything they need to live, and they know its flora and fauna intimately. But, that has unfortunately made them appealing recruits for elephant poachers who use the Baka as hunting guides. The endemic poverty of the Baka makes them easy targets for such work; poaching gangs usually offer a pittance to the Baka guides they use – even as little as a pack of cigarettes. While some Baka have been lured by the payout of poaching, others – like Bosso Andre and his son Gaston – have been brought into the fold of the National Park system to work as eco-guards and guides. Bosso Andre takes us for a walk through the bush, and illuminates the impact that elephant poaching has had on the Baka way of life.

 

ELECTRIC AMAZON – 46 min.

Sunday, April 16th, 11A, Purchase Tickets

Wednesday, April 19th, 2:30P, Purchase Tickets

Mevisha Reddy

The Amazon is one of the wildest and least civilized parts of the planet, but little do we know… in the network of rivers and streams is an electric grid – a bizarre community of fish with a highly sophisticated electric sixth sense. Using electricity, these “Super” fish can communicate wirelessly, control each other remotely and emit shocks that can stop a human heart. This cryptic world has mystified scientists throughout the ages. Now an intrepid scientist, Will Crampton, ventures back into the dark jungles where the inspiration for our technology driven world first emerged, in an attempt to unravel their secrets and unlock the electric code.

 

ELK RIVER – 28 min.

April 18th, 7PM, Plays FREE at the UC Theater!

Part of a series of Montana-centric shorts

Jenny Nichols

A short documentary that captures the migration of elk in the Yellowstone area through a multidisciplinary lens by following a scientist, Arthur Middleton, a contemporary artist, James Prosek and award winning photojournalist Joe Riis. For many of the elk herds that summer in Yellowstone National Park, home is outside the protected park boundaries the rest of the year, as far as 70 miles away. Mirroring a similar expedition undertaken in 1871 that fused science and the arts, this modern band of explorers join their ungulate counterparts on a trek from Wyoming’s rangeland through snowy mountain passes and treacherous river crossings to the rugged beauty of Yellowstone’s high-alpine meadows. Along the way, they meet backcountry guides and cattle ranchers whose lives are intricately tied with the fate of the elk and other migratory species that call the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem home.

 

END OF SNOW – 20 min.

Tuesday, April 18th, 6:30P, Purchase Tickets

Plays as part of Shorts: Science Matters

Friday, April 21st, 4P, Purchase Tickets

Morgan Heim

Filmmaker in Attendance

Dr. Jane Zelikova explores the Fourteeners of Wyoming and Colorado in a search for the past, present, and future tales of their snowpack. She will form friendships, dig holes, and help map a way of living in a world beyond the End of Snow. Dr. Jane Zelikova is a tropical ecologist living in the mountains of Wyoming and Colorado. She dreams of snow in the summer and tropical forests in the dead of winter. But her snow-capped Fourteeners are changing – no longer bringing the deep winter snowpack once promised. This is a future from which she and the people of the West can’t run. What’s a wildly curious, adventurous girl to do? Embark on a journey into the mountains to find the tales of the past, present and future of snow. There will be adventure. Friendships will form. She will dig holes, and fall down those holes. But like any good story, the characters she meets will help show her the way, a map for living in a world beyond the end of snow.

 

ETHIOPIA RISING: RED TERROR TO GREEN REVOLUTION – 61 min.

Monday, April 17th, 7P, Purchase Tickets

Tuesday, April 18th, 2:30P, Purchase Tickets

In conjunction with the 18th Screening –  A Coffee Tasting With Hunter Bay: Ethiopian Yirgacheffe the first in the SOLO Series (Single Origin Limited Offering)

Sponsored by Hunter Bay Coffee

Mark Dodd

Ethiopia – rarely on our TV screens unless it’s news of drought and famine. But this film tells a different story – a story of restored life and renewed hope. Using dramatic reconstruction and documentary footage it shows what is possible when the people from a remote village in the far north of the country decide to stay on and transform their land. Under the leadership of ‘The Man of Fire’, we witness their incredible struggle for survival in the midst of endless droughts and a brutal civil war.

 

FINDING FONTINALIS – 70 min.

Sunday, April 16th, 1P, Purchase Tickets

Travis Lowe

Filmmaker in attendance

After the world’s best brook trout fishery was ruined by river damming, tales of a new brook trout haven lead to a great discovery and raise efforts to protect a valuable new fishery.

 

FIX AND RELEASE – 16 min.

Friday, April 21st, 3:45P, Purchase Tickets

Plays as part of Shorts: Blue Planet

Scott Dobson

Fix and Release explores the Ontario Turtle Conservation Centre, a small turtle trauma centre in Peterborough Ontario Canada as it fights to even the odds for survival that freshwater turtles face in a modern world. Most turtle species in Canada are endangered due to loss of habitat and collisions with cars and boats. Dr. Sue Carstairs leads a team of dedicated staff and volunteers as they develop their own groundbreaking approach to reptile medicine. This visually beautiful film shows turtles in a way that few have seen before – highlighting their amazing ability to recover from catastrophic injury and hinting that these ancient creatures may be more complex than previously thought. Turtles are vital for healthy wetlands and every saved turtle makes a difference. As Dr. Carstairs says, “We are saving the world one turtle at a time”.

 

FORGOTTEN BUT NOT GONE: THE RUSTY PATCHED BUMBLE BEE – 6 min.

Tuesday, April 18th, 6:30P, Purchase Tickets

Plays as part of Shorts: Science Matters

Wednesday, April 19th, 7:30P, Purchase Tickets

Plays as part of A National Wildlife Federation Panel: An Evening of Backyard Bugs

Nate Dappen & Neil Losin

Filmmakers in attendance

In the United States, there are hundreds of species of plants and animals that are at high risk of extinction, but have no federal protection under the Endangered Species Act. They are “Forgotten, But Not Gone.” One of these species is the Rusty-patched Bumble Bee (Bombus affinis). This bee has declined more than 90% across its range in the northeastern and midwestern U.S. A combination of habitat loss, agricultural pesticides, and diseases borne by managed commercial bumble bees is likely to blame. Luckily, in late 2016 the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposed that this species be listed as an Endangered Species, bringing it one step closer to protection. If the bee is listed, it will be the first North American bee species to gain protection under the Endangered Species Act.

 

THE FORGOTTEN SALMON – 35 min.

Friday, April 21st, 4P, Purchase Tickets

Filmmaker in attendance

Galen Brown

Filmmaker in attendance

The story of the lost Atlantic Salmon of Lake Ontario, how we lost them, and a restoration effort to bring them back to the great inland sea.

 

GIRAFFES: AFRICA’S GENTLE GIANTS – 60 min.

Sunday, April 16th 5;45P, Purchase Tickets

Monday, April 17th, 2:45P, Purchase Tickets

Tom Mustill

Filmmaker in attendance

Dr. Julian Fennessy has spent the last 20 years of his life studying giraffes. Now he’s starting to reveal their secrets – the most important being that they are disappearing. The giraffe population in Africa is down by 40 percent in just two decades. In collaboration with a determined Ugandan Wildlife Authority team, Fennessy wants to round up 20 of the world’s rarest giraffe to get them to safety through the wild heart of Uganda, which means embarking on a special voyage across the mighty Nile River. The stakes are high in this urgent and daring mission against poachers affiliated with organized crime, but if successful, the reward will be a brighter future for an animal we have somehow overlooked.

 

GORILLAS IN THE MIST – ALAN ROOT RETROSPECTIVE – 129 min.

Friday, April 21st, 7:30P, Purchase Tickets

Michael Apted

The story of Dian Fossey, a scientist who came to Africa to study the vanishing mountain gorillas, and later fought to protect them.

 

GRAY AREA: WOLVES OF THE SOUTHWEST – 49 min.

Monday, April 17th, 7:30P, Purchase Tickets

Tuesday, April 18th, 2:45P, Purchase Tickets

Dean Cannon & Alan Lacy

Filmmakers in attendance

It’s the American Southwest. A unique species of wolf, unlike any other, is making a comeback. Little known, the Mexican gray wolf has slowly bounced back from the very brink of extinction—only to face extinction yet again, from within: it’s genetics.

In a daring new operation, one lone wolf paves the way forward for a second chance at the survival of the species, raising an old question anew: can man and wolf learn to live alongside each other— or will we, yet again, drive “el lobo” to extinction?

 

HELLO WORLD! – 30 min.

Screening at School Matinees Only

Sara Enright

Presented in association with World Wildlife Fund (WWF), HELLO WORLD! is a six-part series taking a look at the wonders of the natural world through the eyes of some of today’s most celebrated musicians. Featuring six Grammy winning-nominated artists including, Christina Aguilera, Ellie Goulding, Joan Jett, Dave Matthews, Usher Raymond, and Steven Tyler the series takes viewers deep into the environments of animals as varied as sea turtles, jumping spiders, rhinos, and hawks as they live their daily lives. Whether they are searching for water, looking for love, or caring for their families, these animals all have a singular way of surviving. Each episode features the artist’s vibrant storytelling and one of their well-known songs, which provide a soundtrack of sorts for the stories of the animals of the wild as well as a lush musical score.

 

THE HIGH DIVIDE – 16 min.

Tuesday, April 18th, 7P, UC Theater, Free

Screens as part of 3 FREE Montana Short Films

Sponsored by Montana State Parks and UM’s Wildlife Biology Department  

Eric Bendick

Filmmaker in attendance

They say The High Divide is the place where the world is cut in two. Then again, it may be where everything comes together. This place was once called “the big empty.” But it’s bursting at the seams – with deep forests, streams brimming with trout, meadows flush with grizzlies and wildflowers, and peaks so wild and vast they stretch all the way to the horizon. It’s also full of people. People who love the land. Cowboys who love salmon. Range riders who shepherd cattle and carnivores. Woodcutters who fight for forests. Generation after generation stewarding land and water. These are the lost voices of a new kind of pioneer. An original film celebrates the confluence of a wild place, its visionary people, and a bold new mission to preserve and restore the backbone of the American West.

 

THE HUNT – NOWHERE TO HIDE – 48 min

Saturday, April 22nd, 12:30P, Purchase Tickets

Sponsored by Space For Giants

Ellen Husain

Filmmaker in attendance

The eternal arms race between predator and prey is shaped by the habitat in which they live. More than half of the land on Earth is deserts or grasslands. Predators of these open habitats may be able to find their prey, but it works both ways – the prey can often see them coming. In a world of strategy and counter-strategy, when there’s nowhere to hide little is left to chance, and the tactics of the hunt are seen in their sharpest relief.

 

THE ISLANDS AND THE WHALES – 81 min.

Friday, April 21st, 5:30P, Purchase Tickets

Keti Papadema

In their remote home in the North Atlantic the Faroe Islanders have always eaten what nature could provide, proud to put local food on the table. The land yields little, so they have always relied on harvesting their seas. Hunting whales and seabirds kept them alive for generations, and gave them the way of life they love; a life they would pass on to their children. But today they face a grave threat to this tradition. It is not the controversy surrounding whaling that threatens the Faroese way of life; the danger is coming from the whales themselves. The Faroese are among the first to feel the affects of our ever more polluted oceans. They have discovered that their beloved whales are toxic, contaminated by the outside world. What once secured their survival now endangers their children and the Faroe Islanders must make a choice between health and tradition.

 

JUNGLE ANIMAL HOSPITAL – 60 min.

Tuesday, April 18th, 4PM, Purchase Tickets

Rob Sullivan

Alejandro Morales, his zoologist girlfriend Anna Bryant, and their team of dedicated staff and volunteers take on dangerous and exciting challenges in their Jungle Animal Hospital rescue center deep in the Guatemalan jungle.

 

THE LAST DEVILS – 50 min.

Sunday, April 16th, 7:30P, Purchase Tickets

Nick Hayward

This one-hour special explores the incredible and complex lives of the last Tasmanian devils on earth as a rare but contagious cancer threatens them with extinction.

 

THE LAST RHINOS – 9 min.

Saturday, April 22nd, 12:30P, Purchase Tickets

Sponsored by Space For Giants

Brian Dawson

John Hume owns 5 percent of the world’s rhinos. Last year, he sued the South African government to legalize the sale of rhino horn. The case reached South Africa’s equivalent of the Supreme Court this summer. In a nation that’s home to 70 percent of Earth’s rhinos, this is a question of what conservation is in the 21st century. Could selling horn, the very part that rhinos are killed for, actually save the population?

 

A LEAP OF FROG – 5 min.

Wednesday, April 19th, 5P, Purchase Tickets

Friday, April 21st, 2P, Purchase Tickets

Hilco Jansma

A captivating short film showing the unique physical abilities of frogs. The film uses slow motion videos to capture numerous amphibians leaping for their meals.

 

LUMOS – 8 min.

Tuesday, April 18th, 4P, Purchase Tickets

Jason Roehrig

Filmmaker in attendance

Get lost in the wilderness with a storyteller as she describes her first encounter with the magical lights of glowworms.

 

MAGICAL MOORS – 99 min.

Tuesday, April 19th, 4:30P, Purchase Tickets

Jan Haft

Moors, bogs and wetlands can be found all over in Europe. Everyone has at least heard about this habitat but most know little about it. Only 1% of the Middle European wetlands are still untouched. A gigantic amount of carbon is stored inside these wetlands. But knowing about this fact does not stop their destruction. Climate change and global warming are on everyone’s mind – stopping the destruction of moors and wetlands would be one great step towards the reduction of greenhouse gases. This film shows the beauty and the magic inside the moors and its message is clear: Save and protect our last moors and wetlands.

 

MELTING STARS – 15 min.

Friday, April 21st, 3:45P, Purchase Tickets

Plays as part of Shorts: Blue Planet

Kate Green

Filmmaker in attendance

Melting Stars unravels the mystery behind one of the most catastrophic species die offs in recorded history. In 2013 scuba divers off the West coast of British Columbia discovered that the starfish were dying in the millions and suffering horrific deaths. They were disintegrating into goo on the ocean floor and the environmental balance of the marine ecosystem was being changed. Soon the immensity of this epidemic came to light and what researchers had dubbed the Sea Star Wasting Syndrome was now affecting several star fish species all along the Pacific Coast from Alaska to Mexico. The virus was also discovered in preserved museum samples from the 1940’s. So what has changed? Melting Stars follows the clues on this marine mystery.

 

MICROCOSMOS – 177 min.

Thursday, April 20th, 8P, Purchase Tickets

Plays as part of Mellow Mood’s Block Party

Sponsored by Mellow Mood

Claude Nuridsany & Marie Pérennou

A documentary of insect life in meadows and ponds, using incredible close-ups, slow motion, and time-lapse photography. It includes bees collecting nectar, ladybugs eating mites, snails mating, spiders wrapping their catch, a scarab beetle relentlessly pushing its ball of dung uphill, endless lines of caterpillars, an underwater spider creating an air bubble to live in, and a mosquito hatching.

 

MICROSCULPTURE – 6 min.

Monday, April 17th, 7P, Purchase Tickets

Tanya Cochran

Microsculpture is a groundbreaking project by the British photographer Levon Biss that presents insect specimens from the Oxford University Museum of Natural History like never before.  These images reveal an unexpected and often breathtaking beauty and make visible the many intricate adaptations to the form of insects – what entomologists call their microsculpture.

 

MY HAGGAN DREAM – 8 min.

Thursday, April 20th, 2:45P, Purchase Tickets

Friday, April 21st, 3:45P, Purchase Tickets

Plays as part of Shorts: Blue Planet

Rob Sams & Laura Sams

On the island of Saipan, a young girl’s mysterious dream about a haggan, or green sea turtle, leads her to investigate the sea turtles that live around her home. Join her adventure to find turtles, which leads to a wonderful birthday wish.

 

NAMIBIA’S DESERT KINGDOM – 53 min.

Wednesday, April 19th, 4P, Purchase Tickets

Friday, April 21st, 2:15P, Purchase Tickets

Martyn Colbeck & Mike Birkhead

Dust and dunes, sun and sand: the parched landscapes of Namibia in southwest Africa are extreme in every way. This Terra Mater Factual Studios production tells the fascinating story of how the largest animals on our planet survive in the oldest and most inhospitable desert on earth. Ephemeral rivers support a stunning diversity of megafauna in Namibia’s arid areas: elephants as well as giraffes, baboons, antelopes and lions. Spectacular aerials and a fantastic scenery, amazing animal behaviour and stunning time lapse sequences, impressive images and an exciting narrative – this is Namibia’s Desert Kingdom.

 

AN OCEAN MYSTERY: THE MISSING CATCH – 46 min.

Thursday, April 20th, 6P, Purchase Tickets

Alison Barrat

Filmmaker in attendance

A Co-Production with the Smithsonian Channel and Khaled Bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation

A journey following leading fisheries scientist Dr. Daniel Pauly around the world as he investigates the depletion of global fish populations and calls for action to be taken before catastrophe occurs.

 

OPERATION WHALE – 46 min.

Thursday, April 20th, 415P, Purchase Tickets

Sarah Cunliffe

Filmmaker in attendance

A team of scientists and filmmakers document the largest gathering of sharks in UK waters, triggered by the discovery of a whale carcass.

 

OUR LAST REFUGE – 25 min.

Saturday, April 22nd, 11A, Purchase Tickets

Sponsored by Rangitsch Brothers RV and Manufactured Home Center

Daniel Glick

A film about the Blackfeet Nation’s fight to protect the wild and sacred Badger-Two Medicine from industrial development.

 

PLANET EARTH 2 – EPISODE 1 – ISLANDS – 60 min.

Saturday, April 15th, 4P, Free

Saturday, April 22nd, 3P, Free

Both Sponsored by Montana Legal Advisors

Elizabeth White

Remote islands offer sanctuary for some of the planet’s strangest and rarest creatures.

 

PLANET EARTH 2 – EPISODE 2 – MOUNTAINS – 60 min.

Saturday, April 15th, 5P, Free

Saturday, April 22nd, 4P, Free

Both Sponsored by Montana Legal Advisors

Justin Anderson

The great mountain ranges are some of the planet’s most spectacular landscapes, but they are unforgiving places to live in, and only a few animals have what it takes to live at extreme altitude.

 

PLANET EARTH 2 – EPISODE 3 – JUNGLES – 60 min.

Sunday, April 16th, 3P, Free

Saturday, April 22nd, 5P, Free

Both Sponsored by Montana Legal Advisors

Emma Naper

From the jungles of Brazil to Costa Rica, animals face life in the most competitive place on Earth.

 

PLANET EARTH 2 – EPISODE 4 – DESERTS – 60 min.

Sunday, April 16th, 4P, Free

Saturday, April 22nd, 6P, Free

Both Sponsored by Montana Legal Advisors

Ed Charles

The hostile conditions of Earth’s desert regions give rise to the most incredible survival stories on Earth.

 

PLANET EARTH 2 – EPISODE 5 – GRASSLANDS – 60 min.

Monday, April 17th, 4:30P, Free

Saturday, April 22nd, 7P, Free

Both Sponsored by Montana Legal Advisors

Chadden Hunter

Grasslands cover one quarter of all land and support the greatest gatherings of wildlife on Earth, but hostile seasons pose a survival risk.

 

PLANET EARTH 2 – EPISODE 6 – CITIES – 60 min.

Monday, April 17th, 5:30P, Free

Sponsored by Montana Legal Advisors

Fredi Devas

Cities are growing at a faster rate than any other habitat on Earth. They may seem an unlikely place for animals to thrive, but they can be a world of surprising opportunity.

 

PLASTIC IS FOREVER – 20 min.

Wednesday, April 19th, 5P, Purchase Tickets

Friday, April 21st, 2P, Purchase Tickets

Dylan D’Haeze

Filmmaker in attendance

What happens when you throw plastic trash away? Dylan, a 13-year-old from the San Juan Islands follows plastic trash to where it ends up and shows how kids can help make a difference in a world that is increasingly dependent on plastic.

 

POWER OF THE RIVER: EXPEDITION TO THE HEART OF WATER IN BHUTAN – 73 min.

Tuesday, April 18th, 3P, UC Theater, Free

Sponsored by the Bhutan Foundation and UM Wildlife Biology Department

Greg I. Hamilton

Cast member Bryant Dunn and Director in attendance

An adventure documentary from the Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan. This little Buddhist nation, home to the world’s most ambitious commitment to protect nature, faces urgent pressure to dam every last river. A man named “Good Karma” guides an expedition into the unknown to keep his country’s mightiest river wild and free. His trek features a first-ever fishing descent onto virtually unexplored whitewater, including Class IV+ rapids. Along the way, the team makes deep connections and explores stark contrasts with the people of Bhutan and those of neighboring India (whose thirst for electricity is driving a dam frenzy).

 

RACHEL CARSON – 114 min.

Saturday, April 22nd, 2:45P, Purchase Tickets

Michelle Ferrari

Called the mother of the modern environmental movement with her book Silent Spring, Rachel Carson launched the national debate about science and safety, while still balancing her love of writing and the natural world with personal struggles.

 

RANGERS OF THE REEF – 14 min.

Thursday, April 20th, 4P, Purchase Tickets

Brady Valashinas

A group of dedicated local rangers in Raja Ampat, Indonesia work to protect the world’s most biodiverse marine ecosystem from the threats of illegal and destructive fishing. “Rangers of the Reef” is their story.

 

REFLECTIONS OF AN UNDERWATER CAMERAMAN – 5 min.

Saturday, April 22nd, 2:30P, Purchase Tickets

Ken O’Sullivan

A short film about Ken O’Sullivan’s life and work swimming about in the seas around Ireland documenting our wonderful marine world.

 

RETURNING KINGFISHER – 50 min.

Monday, April 17th, 4P, Purchase Tickets

Cees van Kempen

The kingfisher is usually associated with natural rivers, but this story takes place along the Scheldt-Rhine Canal, providing passage for 70,000 cargo ships yearly. So successful is the kingfisher, that they now even inhabit some creeks bordering the busiest canal in the world. Ultra high-speed cameras and special setups to film underground in their nest burrows have resulted in a unique film. It shows the life of the kingfishers, as they conquer the challenges of such an unusual environment.

 

THE RHINO GUARDIANS – 6 min.

Saturday, April 22nd, 12:30P, Purchase Tickets

Dan Sadgrove

In 2016 Dan Sadgrove travelled to South Africa to visit The Black Mambas – the world’s first all female anti-poaching unit operating in the Balule Game Reserve in South Africa. Coming from disadvantaged communities and breaking strong patriarchal tradition, these courageous women focus on eliminating illegal wildlife trade through conservation, education and the protection of wildlife, helping to ensure the long term survival of threatened and endangered species in the area. Each day they patrol up to 20km, unarmed, looking for poachers, wire-snares, and break-ins along the fence line. Their lives are at constant risk from poachers and the dangerous wildlife they protect

 

RIVERS RUN THROUGH ME – 7 min.

Thursday, April 20th, 4P, Purchase Tickets

Charles Perry

Stories from people who are connected to a very special river in Montana. 

 

RUNNING WILD – 7 min.

Friday, April 21st, 4P, Purchase Tickets

Daniel Schmidt

Filmmaker in attendance

In February of 2014, a remotely triggered camera in Utah’s rugged Uinta mountains captured a picture of something no one thought possible in the area: a wolverine. This elusive creature hadn’t been spotted here for nearly 40 years. This one photograph set in motion a massive undertaking to find if these badasses of the animal kingdom were setting up shop here for good. Under the guidance of Adventurers and Scientists for Conservation, ultra runners took to the mountains setting up and checking camera traps around the ecosystem in search of more photographic evidence. The result? A comprehensive survey of wildlife in the range and a model for citizen science projects everywhere.

 

SAVING MY TOMORROW – 30 min.

Will only screen at school matinees

Amy Schatz

From the children who will inherit the planet comes a collection of songs, activism and heartfelt tips for protecting the earth. Saving My Tomorrow features kids from around the world who take on our biggest environmental challenges — from endangered animals and pollution to climate change. Behind the scenes at the American Museum of Natural History, scientists talk with kids about how organisms are affected by a changing earth. A lyrical mix of science, music, and stories of plants and animals in danger, the show is a call from kids to all of us to help take care of the planet and everything on it.

 

TO SCALE: THE SOLAR SYSTEM – 7 min.

Monday, April 17th, 7P, Purchase Tickets

Thursday, April 20th, 2:45P, Purchase Tickets

Wylie Overstreet & Alex Gorosh

A group of friends discovered there were no proportional models of the solar system with complete planetary orbits—most portray the planets and moons as too close together. So, they decided to build one. On a dry lakebed in Nevada, the group constructed a model by drawing circles in the desert around a 1.5 meter sun and a marble-sized Earth small enough to get lost in filmmaker Wylie Overstreet’s pocket. The result is a stunning work of land art that allows viewers to see the full circle of the Earth with their own eyes.

 

SHAPED BY FIRE – 10 min.

Tuesday, April 18th, 7P, UC Theater, Free

Sponsored by Montana State Parks and Montana State Parks Foundation 

Bobby Jahrig

Filmmaker in attendance

Two friends run 52 miles along the MT-ID stateline in a campaign to push the proposed Great Burn Wilderness closer to designation.

 

SOULS OF THE VERMILION SEA – 29 min.

Friday, April 21st, 7:45P, Purchase Tickets

Matthew Podolsky

Filmmakers in attendance

The small fishing communities of the upper Gulf of California are facing a crisis – the black market for the swim bladder of an endangered fish called the totoaba is putting these communities and ecosystems at risk. This illegal fishery is also driving the vaquita, a species of porpoise endemic to this region, to extinction.

 

STORY OF CATS – 120 min.

Tuesday, April 18th, 4P, Purchase Tickets

Anwar Mamon

Filmmaker in attendance

Cats are among the most feared and revered creatures on the planet. Their power, strength, and enigmatic nature have fascinated us for centuries. They are one of the most studied mammals in the world yet only now is their real identity being understood – from their incredible hunting abilities, to their unique physiology and remarkable behaviors. With nearly 40 different species, thriving in almost any environment, the cat is one of the most successful predators since the dinosaurs. Using the latest camera technology and working with leading scientists, we are able to tell the story like never before. Join NATURE in this epic two-part event as we journey across the globe tracking down the origins of these diverse creatures. Take an in-depth look at what makes the family of felines unique and the evolutionary tricks and adaptations that truly make a cat, a cat.

 

SUPER HUMMINGBIRDS – 60 min.

Sunday, April 16th, 11:30A, Purchase Tickets

Wednesday, April 19th, 3P, Purchase Tickets

Ann Johnson Prum

Filmmaker in attendance

With high speed camerawork and breakthrough new science, we enter the fast-paced world of hummingbirds as never before. Speed is their middle name. Their lives are moving faster than the eye can see. They possess natural born super powers that enable them to fly backwards, upside-down, and float in mid-air. And for the first time, we see them mate, lay eggs, fight, and raise families in intimate detail. They are great athletes, tender mothers, brave in combat, and up for any challenge. They are Super Hummingbirds, the smallest, most brilliant birds on earth.

 

TAGGING BUMBLE BEES TO STUDY THEIR MOVEMENTS – 6 min.

Tuesday, April 18th, 6:30P, Purchase Tickets

Plays as part of Shorts: Science Matters

Wednesday, April 19th, 7:30P, Purchase Tickets

Neil Losin & Morgan Heim

Filmmakers in attendance

Are some habitats better for bumble bees than others? Does it depend on the number or type of flowers that are available or some other factor? To answer these questions, Jeremy Hemberger, a graduate student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, designed a system for measuring the length of bumble bees’ foraging trips. He attached radio frequency identification tags to several bumblebees in a colony and then set up an array of detectors in their nest to record the bees comings and goings.

 

THINK LIKE A SCIENTIST: BOUNDARIES – 7 min.

Monday, April 17th, 4P, Purchase Tickets

Tuesday, April 18th, 6:30P, Purchase Tickets

Plays as part of Shorts: Science Matters

Neil Losin & Nathan Dappen

Filmmakers in attendance

Humans construct boundaries — around our homes, our neighborhoods, and our nations — to bring order to a chaotic world. But we rarely consider how these boundaries affect other creatures. In this episode of Think Like A Scientist, we meet conservation photographer Krista Schlyer, who has spent the last seven years documenting the environmental effects of the U.S./Mexico border wall, and biologist Jon Beckmann, who studies how man-made barriers influence the movement of wildlife. Schlyer and Beckmann have seen damaging impacts of the border wall firsthand, but they remain optimistic. Humans probably won’t stop constructing walls and fences any time soon, but planning our boundaries with wildlife in mind can help prevent these structures from causing environmental harm.

 

TISURE – 13 min.

Sunday, April 16th, 11A, Purchase Tickets

Wednesday, April 19th, 2:30P, Purchase Tickets

Adrian Geyer

Filmmaker in attendance

A couple who lives in the vastness of the mountains, where all they’ve got is each other. No matter what conflict arises, it has to be solved urgently. The sadness may let them feel there are no options. Seen from a distance, their perspective may be wrong.

 

A TOAD STORY – 50 min.

Wednesday, April 19th, 5P, Purchase Tickets

Friday, April 21st, 2P, Purchase Tickets

Toril Simonsen

In a deep fjord in Norway a small community is changed forever when a new European road route threatens the local toads. ”A Toad Story” is a warm film about seeing greatness in the planet’s smallest creatures.

 

UNLOCKING THE CAGE – 91 min.

Sunday, April 16th, 7:15P, Purchase Tickets

Monday, April 17th, 2:30P, Purchase Tickets

Steve Wise in attendance on 4/16

DA Pennebaker

Unlocking the cage is an intimate look at the life and battle of animal rights lawyer Steven Wise as he fights for the rights of animals to be treated as a person with legal protections.

 

VISIONS OF AN ISLAND – 15 min.

Saturday, April 22nd, 11A, Purchase Tickets

Sky Hopinka

Situated on a tranquil island in the centre of the Bering Sea, a visitor captures the poetic reflections of an Unangam Tunuu elder on landscape, fauna and youth through a collection of magical, dreamlike imagery.

 

VOICES OF FIRE – 25 min.

Saturday, April 22nd, 11A, Purchase Tickets

Hugo Sindelar

Filmmaker in attendance

Voices of Fire is a 25 minute film exploring the role of wildfires on the Western landscape. How will the ranchers and the ecosystem rebound from this tragedy and what can be done to prevent another Soda Fire in the future? The goal is to use the Soda Fire as a case study to discuss how to manage and prevent future wildfires in the area.

 

THE WAIT – 11 min.

Saturday, April 22nd, 2:30P, Purchase Tickets

David Hayes

The new documentary ‘The Wait’, produced with Contra Agency, is a beautiful and honest insight into the process, passion and patience of an incredible young talent. The film takes the viewer on a journey from Michel’s hometown in Belgium to the remote mountains of Romania. On the trail of wild bison, Michel tracks the movement of the animals and then waits for the perfect moment; a process that can take up to a week to capture one shot.

 

WALKING BEAR COMES HOME: THE LIFE AND WORK OF CHUCK JONKEL – 57 min.

Thursday, April 20th, 5P, Purchase Tickets

Sponsored by Rangitsch Brothers RV and Manufactured Home Center

Frank Tyro

Chuck Jonkel began the first systematic study of polar bears in the Canadian Arctic in 1966. He founded the Great Bear Foundation and the International Wildlife Film Festival and continued to work for the conservation of all eight bear species until his death in 2016.

 

WILD NEXT DOOR – 2 min.

Monday, April 17th, 4P, Purchase Tickets

Josef Metesh

Filmmaker in attendance

A short film about the beauty of nature Montanans can find without traveling the world.

 

WILD SEVE – 12 min.

Wednesday, April 19th, 4P, Purchase Tickets

Thursday, April 20th, 6:30P, Purchase Tickets

Sponsored by Elephant Friendly Tea a project of the University of Montana’s Broader Impact Group in partnership with the Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network.

Ram Alluri & Prakash Matada

Filmmaker in attendance

Wild animals such as elephants and tigers regularly damage local agriculture and kill livestock in the Indian state of Karnataka, causing farmers to chase or kill them in retaliation. To mitigate this issue, Wild Seve works to obtain compensation for affected farmers.

 

WILD TROUT: A MONTANA FISH STORY – 12 min.

Friday, April 21st, 3:45P, Purchase Tickets

Sponsored by Rangitsch Brothers RV and Manufactured Home Center

John Byorth

With dead and dying rivers, Montana attempts to study its beloved trout, leading to the most prescient–and radical–management decision ever undertaken in 1970s America: let the trout go wild.

 

WOLF HUNTER – 12 min.

Monday, April 17th, 7:30P, Purchase Tickets

Tuesday, April 18th, 2:45P, Purchase Tickets

James Morgan

Located in the far north east of Russia, Yakutia is by far the largest non-nation state in the world and home to the coldest city on the planet with temperatures in winter regularly dipping below 50 degrees celsius. In 2013 the state’s president, Yegor Borisov, announced a ‘state of emergency’, calling for international support and setting into motion a bounty system, which has since grown into the largest organised wolf hunt in history.  The problem is that wolves are decimating reindeer herds. 12,000 reindeer were killed last year at a cost of 3 million euros to government caravans and indigenous cooperatives. The government can absorb these costs but across the taiga, exploding wolf populations are pushing indigenous people into poverty and exacerbating the breakdown of communities. In March I travelled to Yakutia to witness the situation first hand. There I met Ion Maxsimovic, the region’s most celebrated wolf hunter. Ion killed 23 wolves last year, more than any other hunter, winning 300,000 roubles and a snowmobile.

 

YASUNI MAN – 92 min.

Sunday, April 16th, 5:00P, Purchase Tickets

Tuesday, April 18th, 5:45P, Purchase Tickets

Ryan Killackey

Filmmaker in attendance

Yasuni Man is a documentary feature about the Yasuni Biosphere of Amazonian Ecuador, the world’s most biodiverse forest, and the Waorani, an indigenous Amazonian tribe plagued by deception, exploitation and murder. It’s a real-life Avatar story: Once under siege by missionaries seeking to civilize them, the Waorani now battling industry operatives and their own government in a fight to survive. In 2016, Yasuni now hangs on the edge of collapse. Together with his native friend Otobo, Killackey embarks on a mission traveling over 1,000 miles by boat and aided by a team of scientists, their research supports the claim that Yasuni is truly mega-diverse. However, as oil companies encroach and colonisation, deforestation, illegal logging, illegal bush markets, overhunting, oil spills, disease and violations of human rights run rampant, the Waorani struggle to assimilate and their forest eden is destroyed, all for the oil that lies beneath Yasuni.

 

YEAR OF THE WILDEBEEST – ALAN ROOT RETROSPECTIVE – 55 min.

Sunday, April 16th, 1:30P, Purchase Tickets

Successfully conveying the sheer scale and enormity of the wildebeest (Connochaetes gnou) migration, The Year of the Wildebeest, provides a breathtakingly dramatic view of this immense, epic journey. A dream-child of internationally acclaimed wildlife photographers Alan and Joan Root, this film provides a captivating insight into life during this electrifying and action-packed pilgrimage.