2010 Anti-Corporate Film Festival
Beer Wars — Let's face it: Size matters. That's immediately apparent in this revealing and entertaining behind-the-scenes look at the daily battles and all-out wars that determine what kind of beer Americans get to drink. In the past two decades, a growing number of small, independent, and regional "micro-brewers" have emerged to challenge the corporate behemoths that produce millions of gallons of watered down, flavorless, industrial swill — by brewing small batches of unique, hand-crafted beers with complex and robust flavors. The film follows the struggles of two such entrepreneurs as they battle the might and tactics of Corporate America in a contemporary David and Goliath story about keeping your integrity ... and your house.
Directed by Anat Baron (USA, 2009, 89 minutes) Screening Thursday, May 20, at 7:00 p.m. Followed by a micro-brew beer reception at the San Francisco Media Archive at 9:00 (separate admission).
The Coca-Cola Case — A searing indictment of the Coca-Cola empire and its alleged role in the kidnapping, torture, and murder of union leaders trying to improve working conditions in Colombia, Guatemala, and Turkey. The film follows labor lawyers Daniel Kovalik and Terry Collingsworth, along with Ray Rogers (founding director of the Stop Killer Coke! campaign), as they attempt to hold the giant U.S. international beverage company accountable in this taut legal/human rights procedural.
Directed by Carmen Garcia and German Gutierrez (Canada, 2009, 86 minutes) Screening Friday, May 21, at 9:00 p.m. Post-screening Q & A with Ray Rogers of Stop Killer Coke! Co-presented by the Labor Film Festival.
Food Fight — When we walk into a supermarket, we assume that we have the widest possible choice of healthy food. But over the course of the 20th century, our food system has actually been co-opted by corporate forces whose interests do not lie in providing the public with fresh, healthy, and sustainably produced food. Fortunately, an alternative to Big Agribusiness emerged within the California counter-culture in the late 1960s and early '70s, when a group of anti-corporate protesters led by Alice Waters inadvertantly launched a counter-revolution by creating a food chain outside of the conventional system. The result was the birth of the local/organic/sustainable food movement that has brought taste and variety back to our tables.
Directed by Chris Taylor (USA, 2009, 74 minutes). Screening Saturday, May 22, at 7:30 p.m. Post-film Q & A with SF Chronicle food writer Eric Gower.
Houston, We Have a Problem — Against a backdrop of global warming, "peak oil", and more than 200,000 gallons of crude pouring into the Gulf of Mexico every day, world energy demand continues to grow. The aggressive strategies for securing access to oil now center around being the highest bidder or the biggest bully. This revealing look inside the energy capital of the world documents in their own words the Texas oilmen who feed America's ferocious oil habit — even as they admit that the drug of cheap oil could ultimately be the nation's downfall. Along the way, the film makes clear that the next generation of "wildcatters" will strike it rich in alternative sources of fuel such algae, and that we must embrace renewable energy if we want to save the planet and ourselves.
Directed by Nicole Torre. (USA, 2009, 82 minutes) Screening Saturday, May 22, at 9:30 p.m.
Orgasm, Inc — A look inside the medical industry, and the marketing campaigns that are literally and figuratively re-orienting our everyday lives around health, illness, and lifestyle. When director Liz Canner was hired to edit erotic videos for a pharmaceutical company developing the first Viagra-type drug for women, she saw it as an opportunity to make a documentary about the relationship between science and pleasure. But she soon began to suspect that the pharmaceutical industry might be endangering the physical and mental health of women in its pursuit of billion-dollar profits.
(USA, 2010, 73 minutes) Screening Friday, May 21, at 7:15 p.m. Post-film Q & A with Carol Queen, Ph.D. Co-presented by Bay Area Women in Film and Media.
Tapped — Is clean drinking water a fundamental human right, or a commodity to be bought and sold like any other article of commerce? From the producers of Who Killed the Electric Car? and I.O.U.S.A. comes this timely documentary that offers a behind-the-scenes look at a largely unseen and unregulated industry that seeks to privatize a public resource — and sell it back to the public at an obscene price. From the production of plastic water bottles to the oceans where so many of those bottles end up, this startling film paints a devastating portrait of how the powerful bottled water industry affects the lives of those caught at the intersection of Big Business and one of the last public commons.
Directed by Stephanie Soechtig (USA, 2009, 76 minutes) Screening Thursday, May 20, at 9:00 p.m.