Monday, February 22, 2010

Let's Review

Ok ready for another novel by AnneC. Banister? Here we go,

I volunteered a couple weekends ago at the Boulder International Film Festival. And let's just say now more then ever I cannot wait to start making movies. I really enjoyed the energy of the film festival and the audience. I also super loved (of course) the productions. Between the stories, the creativity in telling stories, and the visual presentation, I was totally in love with the film world. Two products I want to talk about are two documentaries I recommend seeing.

The Most Dangerous Man in America -- Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers
This documentary was a first person account of Daniel Ellsberg involvement in the government during Vietnam and his story leading up to his decision to release the Pentagon papers into the NY Times and ultimately most of the major newspapers in the United States.

This documentary, in true "history channel" fashion really breaks down the Vietnam war, the anti-war movements in the 60's and 70's and the political atmosphere at the time. It really showed Nixon and even Kennedy for what they really were.. monsters. Truly heartless leaders who didn't care about destroying a country, dropping bombs, and killing thousands of innocent people. They were power hungry, resource hungry, war hungry etc. Mr. Ellsberg's decision to release top secret government documents was an heroic act that I believe is important today to talk about, seeing that the Iraq war is just as ridiculous and disastrous as the Vietnam war. Now I don't really want to get heavy into the purpose of war, mainly because war is wrong the end. So there's no other side to be had.. :) BUT in all honesty I felt really inspired watching footage of protesters back during Vietnam who took risks, were arrested, and even beaten for standing up for what they believed in. And they were standing up for the lives of our fellow Americans who were risking their life to fight. Today thousands of men and women are risking their lives over in the Middle East and I hope that we as Americans will stand up and voice our opinions and our disagreements with this war. That's patriotic.

Ok back to the production, the film was really well done and I really enjoyed the interviews telling the story over narration. It even included recorded audio of Nixon being super pissed off and admitting he was killing thousands for ridiculous reasons. I recommend watching this if you're interested in the Vietnam War, the truth behind the Pentagon papers, or an inside look at the crookedness of our government.

Ok Film number two : Climate Refugees

This film is truly about a movement. Do you believe that global climate change is a natural process or a result of man's consumption and waste? The purpose of Climate Refugees is to bring a new perspective to the topic of climate change, and that perspective being; it doesn't really matter what's causing it, global climate change is destroying our natural world leading to thousands of people all over the world losing their livelihood, their resources, and ultimately their homes due to natural disasters and well climate changes. This film puts a human face to a very political discussion and simply says "hey, if we would step out of our office for a moment and stop arguing we'd see that whether or not we agree with what's causing our climate's odd behavior it's still happening and it's killing our land and our people" Many African countries are suffering from droughts and are forced to migrate to neighboring countries to seek food. Many farm lands around the world are no longer capable of producing crops, such as rice, which we in the US consume a lot of. So what do we do? Well at first as I was watching this film I thought, well let's open our borders and welcome everyone with open arms! This is a beautiful idea, but a very unrealistic one I know. So plan B... 1. consume less 2. waste less. 3. save and recycle. Turn off lights, car pool, composite waste, recycle plastic.. seriously. I can throw out statistics of how much we in this country waste a day and what that does to the rest of the world, but I'm sure you already have an idea. Going green should not be a trendy thing and should not be laughed at. It's very necessary for our survival and the survival of others.. others being those who farm and grow the food you consume daily. Those who produce the clothes and the materials for the clothes that you wear. If they're out of the picture, then your life is going to drastically change for the worse.

I really really appreciate this film maker's way of putting a human face to a political battle. Hey you on the left and you on the right, can you please meet me in the middle so I can show you that while you're arguing, people are dying, and you're basically wasting all of our time. Seriously, I'm so frustrated with the way the government is divided and how childish they all are. They're like a bunch of five year olds who can't play well with each other. Yes its very good to have different opinions and ideas on situations but when you can't come to a decision because of pride, selfishness, and just plain stubbornness, well then our democracy isn't so accomplished after all. Does it matter what's causing Global Climate Change, no! But it does matter that there are steps we can take to make sure our land and the human race continues to thrive. Our population is increasing so much and we need to adjust our lifestyles. It's really an awesome discussion and an excellent interruption into the debate. Go out and rent this or look it up.. "Climate Refugees" honestly you will want to go green and you will understand more about the issue then those who are in office.

I didn't mean to be such a hater on the government.... but I guess I really am! Well those two documentaries are well worth seeing. I suggest watching them with someone or a group of people so you can discuss them afterwards because truly that's the purpose of documentary film production.

When I make my first film, I hope it is something that stirs people's emotions, knowledge, and discussions. While you're at it, rent Touching the Void and God Grew Tired of Us. Touching the Void is about this crazy hiking story of these two British guys, seriously a crazy adventure. And God Grew Tired of Us is the story of lost boys from Sudan who were brought to America to be educated. It takes place in Pittsburgh, PA which is really cool! But a very serious story of the war in Uganda and the many lives being effected by it.

So after that I'll end with a quick update on my life.

I've been running a lot lately to reteach myself how much I love to run and I have found it is the best way to start the day. I hope it also keeps me in shape for hiking season. I wish I had a friend like HOLLY who wanted to hike daily but people around here don't do much winter hiking. I guess I'll take up snowshoeing. I've also been really busy doing my own contract productions which you can view at

I've been doing networking lately and research as I'm on a journey to start my own film. I'm feeling really good energy with this idea and from everyone I meet. I believe so much in the power of a good story and therefore instead of calling myself a producer, I'm pitching myself as a story teller. I love that idea.
I've also been doing some fundraising projects for Haiti with some friends and that went super well! The American Red Cross has a site that lists the names of people missing in Haiti, over 200,000 names. So my friends and I made beaded bracelets with names of missing persons in Haiti and collected donations for the bracelets. People who bought a bracelet were to wear them, pray about the missing people,think about the missing people, and check the website for any updates. We believe these bracelets built a bridge between Haiti's communities and ours.

I'm currently editing a concert I shot and produced as well as transcribing a DVD series for a new educational movement. Maybe the next time I blog I'll let you know how I feel about the education system. In short.. if you want to teach a child to take a test, then you might as well give up as an educator. Education is about encouraging, exploring, and experiencing.. not taking tests!

Someday when Anne rules the world.. there will be puppies and flowers and sunshine.. and common sense.
I'm going to try to start updating this more. I do things during the day and think I need to blog about this, but of course I never do.

Hopefully my rambling made sense, if it didn't contact me and I'll clear it up. As my late cousin Bryan always said, "Stay Gold" love love love and whatever you choose to do in life, realize your actions affect everything and your kindness goes a long way.