Environmental Showcase at Annapolis Film Festival to feature The Islands and the Whales

| March 17, 2017
Rams Head

The way of life of a remote island culture and the devastating toll that environmental pollution is taking on the community and its children is depicted in The Islands And The Whales, the award-winning documentary featured in the Environmental Showcase of the Fifth Annapolis Film Festival, Friday, March 31 at 12:30 PM at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts. There will be a second screening on Sunday, April 2nd at 2:30pm at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts sponsored by Norma and Bill Bird! Both screenings will be preceded by the short film, Rising Tide, sponsored by The Chesapeake Legal Alliance.

The Islands and the Whales is a sympathetic look at the life of Faroe Islanders, seeking to continue their traditional ways of subsistence on barren islands in the face of environmental changes and international controversy. Directed by Scottish director Mike Day, the stunningly composed film, featuring pioneering ambisonic sound design by George Lucas’s Skywalker Sound, has won awards at festivals in Edinburgh (Scotland), Toronto, and New York City.

The film will be followed by a panel discussion on the issues raised by the film and how they impact coastal communities, including those along the Chesapeake. The panel will be moderated by Virginia Tippie, director of the Coastal Ocean Initiative at the Coastal America Foundation, along with panelists Dr. Donald Boesch, professor of Marine Science and President of the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science; Elvia Thompson, president, Annapolis Green; and others. Preceding the film is Rising Tide, a short film about Miami’s struggles to keep the city above water.  

Now in its fifth year, the Annapolis Film Festival (AFF) brings independent cinema to the Chesapeake with an extraordinary lineup of narrative, short, and documentary films. The Festival takes place March 30-April 2, 2017 in downtown Annapolis, screening more than 70 films at five locations.

The Islands and the Whales looks at life on the remote, rugged Faroe Islands, high in the North Atlantic between Iceland and Norway. The land yields little, and the islanders have relied on harvesting their seas. Hunting whales and seabirds kept them alive for generations and gave them the way of life they love and would pass on to their children. But serious threats arise. They learn that the whales on which they depend for survival are toxic, contaminated by pollution. What once secured their survival now endangers their children, and the Faroe Islanders are faced with a choice between health and tradition.

Director Mike Day, who spent four years making the film, was named Best Emerging International Filmmaker at the Toronto HotDocs film festival. The film also won the DOC NYC Grand Jury Prize and the Silver Puffin Documentary Award from the Reykjavik International Film Festival.

The Environmental Showcase is sponsored by Lynn McReynolds and Bert Carp and David and Katie Leavy. The film is sponsored by Norm and Bill Bird. The film will also be rescreened on Sunday, April 2 at 12:30 pm in the Main Theater of Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts.

Tickets and passes to the Annapolis Film Festival are available from the website, www.annapolisfilmfestival.com. Prices range from $12.50 for a single screening or panel to $125 for a general festival pass. Student and senior tickets are $10. Day passes are $40 each and student passes are $50 for all four days.

The complete schedule of films is available on the website. Check back frequently for updated information about films, tickets, and schedule changes.

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