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Human Rights Watch Film Festival 2012: Bidder 70

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Human Rights Watch Film Festival 2012: Bidder 70

Tim DeChristopher was a 27-year-old economics student at the University of Utah when he interfered with an auction by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). He bid on and won 12 parcels of beautiful land in Southern Utah that he had no intention to pay for and, especially, to drill for oil on. On the contrary, his motivation for his inventive form of non-violent protest was to ensure that “oil stay in the ground so that we can have a chance for a livable future.” Beth and George Gage’s Bidder 70 is a highly inspirational account of DeChristopher’s life since then, including his beliefs on climate change, his activist efforts to bring about necessary political changes to save the future of our planet, and his reflections on his indictment on two federal charges and the current state of our democracy. There are a lot of environmental documentaries out there about inciting change, but Bidder 70 is one of the most affecting.

Without being didactic, the documentary demonstrates how an ordinary concerned citizen can take a stand when politicians neglect to make decisions for the good of the people and instead serve the interests of big business. And while DeChristopher was sentenced to jail, it’s clear that his efforts to draw attention to the government’s failure to do anything substantial about climate change and to follow its own laws in regard to the sale of this land were not in vain. We witness the people DeChristopher was involved with (many part of an organization called Peaceful Uprising) and whom he’s subsequently inspired—and without the slightest tinge of manipulation, Bidder 70 convinces us that these people really do care about the fate of humankind and that we’re entrapped in a legal system that is, environmentally speaking, still set on driving us off a cliff.

You’re feelings on all of this will, of course, still depend on your views on climate change. For Tim, his belief that there’s something drastically wrong came when he heard the following in a speech by Terry Root, a Phd and Nobel Prize winner: “There were things we could have done in the ‘80s, things we could have done in the ‘90s, but at this point, we’re too late.” As he recounts the story with her sitting next to him, what “shattered” him and then “moved him to tears” was when she put her hand on his shoulder and said, “I’m sorry, my generation failed yours.” And there’s something very moving about this simple yet powerful story, maybe because Tim and Terry don’t look like people under any illusions, but instead seem clearheaded and sensible. In a documentary that’s not about statistics, facts, and graphs, Bidder 70’s most proselytizing moments are ones like these, and, without even wanting to be, they comes across inconspicuously because they feel so honest.

Although we already know that DeChristopher will end up in jail, we feel some sense of hope every time the film informs us that his trail has been postponed because it doesn’t take long to realize that, without being Christ-like, he’s humbly sacrificing himself for everyone who cares about saving the planet. Hopefully this film will, in a sense, continue to postpone his silencing.

This year’s Human Rights Watch Film Festival runs from June 14 – 28. For more information, click here.

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Watch: The Long-Awaited Deadwood Movie Gets Teaser Trailer and Premiere Date

Welcome to fucking Deadwood!

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Deadwood
Photo: HBO

At long last, we’re finally going to see more of Deadwood. Very soon after the HBO series’s cancellation in 2006, creator David Milch announced that he agreed to produce a pair of two-hour films to tie up the loose ends left after the third season. It’s been a long road since, and after many false starts over the years, production on one standalone film started in fall 2018. And today we have a glorious teaser for the film, which releases on HBO on May 31. Below is the official description of the film:

The Deadwood film follows the indelible characters of the series, who are reunited after ten years to celebrate South Dakota’s statehood. Former rivalries are reignited, alliances are tested and old wounds are reopened, as all are left to navigate the inevitable changes that modernity and time have wrought.

And below is the teaser trailer:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tAcftIUE6MQ

Deadwood: The Movie airs on HBO on May 31.

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Watch: Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood Gets Teaser Trailer

When it rains, it pours.

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Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Photo: Columbia Pictures

When it rains, it pours. Four days after Quentin Tarantino once more laid into John Ford in a piece written for his Beverly Cinema website that saw the filmmaker referring to Ford’s She Wore a Yellow Ribbon as Tie a Yellow Ribbon, and two days after Columbia Pictures released poster art for QT’s ninth feature that wasn’t exactly of the highest order, the studio has released a teaser for Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. The film was announced early last year, with Tarantino describing it as “a story that takes place in Los Angeles in 1969, at the height of hippy Hollywood.”

Set on the eve of the Manson family murders, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood tells the story of TV actor Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his stunt double, Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt), as they try to get involved in the film industry. The film also stars Margot Robbie (as Sharon Tate), Al Pacino, the late Luke Perry, Damian Lewis, Dakota Fanning, Emile Hirsch, Timothy Olyphant, Kurt Russell, and Bruce Dern in a part originally intended for the late Burt Reynolds.

See the teaser below:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Scf8nIJCvs4

Columbia Pictures will release Once Upon a Time in Hollywood on July 26.

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Watch the Stranger Things 3 Trailer, and to the Tune of Mötley Crüe and the Who

A wise woman once said that there’s no such thing as a coincidence.

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Stranger Things 3
Photo: Netflix

A wise woman once said that there’s no such thing as a coincidence. On Friday, Jeff Tremaine’s The Dirt, a biopic about Mötley Crüe’s rise to fame, drops on Netflix. Today, the streaming service has released the trailer for the third season of Stranger Things. The clip opens with the strains of Mötley Crüe’s “Home Sweet Home,” all the better to underline that the peace and quiet that returned to the fictional rural town of Hawkins, Indiana at the end of the show’s second season is just waiting to be upset again.

Little is known about the plot of the new season, and the trailer keeps things pretty vague, though the Duffer Brothers have suggested that the storyline will take place a year after the events of the last season—duh, we know when “Home Sweet Home” came out—and focus on the main characters’ puberty pangs. That said, according to Reddit sleuths who’ve obsessed over such details as the nuances of the new season’s poster art, it looks like Max and company are going to have to contend with demon rats no doubt released from the Upside Down.

See below for the new season’s trailer:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YEG3bmU_WaI

Stranger Things 3 premieres globally on July 4.

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