Rooftop Summer Series’ Kickstarter Extend the Summer Campaign has additional screening events this fall, starting with a special screening this Saturday of Josh Fox’s Gasland.
Part vérité travelogue, part exposé, part mystery, part bluegrass banjo meltdown, and part showdown, Gasland delivers a devastating look into the effects of the natural gas drilling method known as hydraulic fracturing.
The show will include live music by Vanessa Bley, Chappo, and Rude Mechanical Orchestra, speeches by local politicians and activists, a Q & A with director Josh Fox, and an after party with a free open bar, all on the pier along the East River at Solar One.
Together with the Fledgling Fund and International WOW Company, Rooftop Films been taking the film through some of the areas most affected by this drilling, including Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and Harrisburg in Pennsylvania and Syracuse and Callicoon in New York. Saturday’s New York City show will be the final stop of the six city tour.
Date: Saturday, September 11, 2010
Location: On the pier along the East River at Solar One, 2420 FDR Drive, Service Road East at 23rd Street and the East River. Take the R or the 6 subway to 23rd Street and walk all the way east.
- 6:30 Doors Open
- 7:00 Live Music by Vanessa Bley
- 7:15 Speeches by Local Activists and Politicians
- 7:30 Live Music by Chappo
- 8:00 Live Music by Rude Mechanical Orchestra
- 9:00 Film Begins
- 10:40 Q and A with director Josh Fox and Local Activists
- 11:00 After Party
Here is the synopsis for Gasland:
Gasland tells the story of what happened when a natural gas mining company offered director Josh Fox and his upstate New York neighbors $100,000 each for the right to drill for gas on their land, and Fox thought he’d better examine what was going on before he signed away his property. This led him on a cross-country odyssey that uncovered a trail of secrets, lies and contamination.
Fox serves as the film’s emotional divining rod, wandering and wavering throughout the US, picking up on tragic tales of people, animals and places contaminated beyond repair, pointing always toward the hazardous link between “clean” natural gas and dangerously polluted water. Explaining the problem, Fox says, “Let me start at the beginning: this is Dick Cheney.” In 2005, Cheney’s secretive Energy Commission designed a bill that was able to overturn parts of various decades-old environmental-protection legislation, allowing for a relatively new process of gas drilling, invented by Halliburton. Commonly referred to as “fracking,” in this new process, the mining companies inject a cornucopia of toxic chemicals deep into the ground and explode the rock beds. Companies across 38 states are doing this with almost no oversight or regulations, often operating within feet of homes, schools, streams, wells and aquifers. An EPA spokesmen describes the legislation as “Orwellian” and “Un-American.”
As Fox chases the companies’ operations across the country, he encounters cats and horses losing their hair in clumps, men and women with sudden painful illnesses, and houses where you can literally light the tap water on fire. Cowboys and roughnecks in the far west and deep south–certainly not your granola-eating tree-huggers–decry the situation with pathos, charm and a bit of mordant humor. The gas companies deny, deny, deny.
Fox is able to explain the process and the repercussions with an easy-going verve and a dire sense of urgency. With a swelling populist love for America, Fox gets the viewer to understand the problem and care deeply. Gasland begins as a personal query about Fox’s own land, morphs into a documentary as he encounters people with stories to tell, and ends as activist rallying cry exposing one of America’s most dangerous environmental secrets.
Find out more information for the Gasland screening event HERE.