Sunday, June 22, 2014

PBS version of PolyCultures now available FREE online!

From 2008 to 2010 I had the good fortune to collaborate with Tom Kondilas of LESS Productions and Brad Masi of the New Agrarian Center on a documentary movie about the remarkable local food movement around Cleveland, Ohio.

To my knowledge PolyCultures is the first and perhaps only documentary that takes a comprehensive look at a single region's local food system and the mix of communities involved in creating it.  It features tours of area farms, innovative programs in urban areas, and commentary from national experts like Michael Pollan, David Orr, and Rep. Marcy Kaptur.

The 100-minute director's cut of PolyCultures: Food Where We Live debuted in March 2009 to sold-out crowds at the 33rd Cleveland International Film Festival.  DVDs followed a few months later - 5 years ago, today, in fact.

The following year we produced a half-as-long version of PolyCultures so WVIZ/PBS ideastream could televise it right before the national PBS premiere of Food Inc.

Now we're celebrating the 5-year anniversary and making that version freely available to all!

53-min. PBS version

Also, we cut the PBS version into two parts - one for those most interested in solutions to urban food deserts (which premiered at the Wild & Scenic Environmental Film Fest in 2010)...

Part 1 of 2: Fresh Food in the City of Cleveland

...and another for those looking to learn more about the ecological alternatives to our country's industrial food system.

Part 2 of 2: Ecological Agriculture in Northeast Ohio

If you like what you see and are interested in the original 100-minute cut, you can still purchase that on DVD for educational, library, or personal use by clicking here.  Also, there you can contact LESS Productions if you have interest in publicly screening any of the shorter cuts.

Certainly local food around Cleveland has evolved greatly since PolyCultures was filmed in 2007 and 2008, but having recently re-watched it I feel the overarching themes ring true and may resonate beyond the local food movement itself.  It's all about being industrious and living in tune with nature - with some good tunes playing in the background, naturally!

Whatever your level of interest in local food, I hope you'll be interested to give PolyCultures a watch... and to let others know what you think in the comments below.