Presented by

Martha’s Vineyard Film Society
in collaboration with
Vineyard Conservation Society

Nature As Inspiration

5th Annual

Environmental Film Festival

For four days, we combine environmental films, discussions, and an art exhibit by MVRHS students that will adorn the walls of the Feldman Family Art Space in the Film Center. A Q&A follows each film with experts, community members, and special guests.

Enjoy a stimulating green weekend…

Purchase an All-Access Pass here

Thursday, May 23:

4:00 PM — TOMORROW’S POWER: Local activists in Gaza, Germany, and Colombia challenge fossil-fuel dependency and power structures in a struggle for social and climate justice. Tomorrow’s Power showcases three communities around the world and their responses to economic and environmental emergencies. In the war-torn, oil-rich Arauca province in Colombia, communities have been building a peace process from the bottom up. In Germany, activists are pushing the country to fully divest from fossil-fuel extraction and complete its transition to renewable energy. In Gaza, health practitioners harness solar power to battle daily life-threatening energy blackouts in hospitals.


6:30 PM — Opening reception in the Film Center Lobby with live jazz music by David Hannon. 

7:30 PM — THE RIVER AND THE WALLThis film follows five friends on an immersive adventure through the unknown wilds of the Texas borderlands as they travel 1200 miles from El Paso to the Gulf of Mexico on horses, mountain bikes, and canoes.



Friday, May 24:

4:00 PM — Climate Change Panel with State Rep. Dylan Fernandes, Ben Robinson, member of ICAN as well as the Sunrise Movement, Zach Zobel, lead project scientist for WHRC’s initiative with Wellington Management which has a goal of integrating climate science and asset management, two MVRHS students who have been part of the Protect Your Environment “PYE” club as well as the local ‘climate cafes’, and Jeremy Houser, Ecologist for the Vineyard Conservation Society will act as the panel’s moderator.

Climate Change seems to be on everyone’s minds these days, from local coffee shops, town halls, to political forums.  Although there are still skeptics (in the minority), the overriding factors driving climate change/global warming is the amount of CO2 that is put into the atmosphere by human hands. For example, it’s estimated that 40% of CO2 comes from transportation emissions.

We’ve put a panel of scientists, politician, and other community individuals together to talk about the local and far-reaching impact of climate change. We hope you, our audience, will also be an active participant in the discussion.


7:30 PM — INTO THE CANYON: In 2016 filmmaker/photographer Pete McBride and writer Kevin Fedarko set out on a 750-mile journey on foot through the entire length of the Grand Canyon.  Directed by Pete McBride and produced by Insignia Films, INTO THE CANYON is a story of extreme physical hardship that stretches the bonds of friendship and a meditation on the timeless beauty of this sacred place. It is an urgent warning about the environmental dangers that are placing one of America’s greatest monuments in peril and a cautionary tale for our complex relationship with the natural world.


Saturday, May 25:


BURNED followed by a Q & A with directors Alan Dater and Lisa Mertin
USA/Duration: 30 mins
Directed by Alan Dater and Lisa Mertin

BURNED tells the little-known story of the accelerating destruction of our forests for fuel and probes the policy loopholes, huge subsidies, and blatant greenwashing of the burgeoning biomass electric power industry.

USA / Duration: 6 mins
Directed by: Palmer Morse, Rachel Weinberg
USA / Duration: 6 mins 

Directed by: Jess Colquhoun
USA / Duration: 10 mins
Directed by: Ellen Esling
USA / Duration: 9 mins
Directed by: Dominic Gill

USA/ Duration: 3:15 mins
Directed by Duct Tape Then Beer


3:30 PM — MVRHS Student Art Show Reception and Awards  (awards will be given out prior to 4pm film)

On Saturday, join us for a special event honoring our Island’s talented young artists. The Art of Conservation, an art competition created by the Vineyard Conservation Society, holds its annual award ceremony at 4:00, preceded by the first public showing of the winning artworks. (The opening is at 3:30 with light refreshments, but the art will remain in the Feldman Family Artspace throughout the festival.) The Art of Conservation encourages students from the MV Regional High School and Charter School to reflect on the value of nature, what it means to them, and to express themselves through a variety of media, including painting, drawing, photography, sculpture, and digital design. Visit the Art of Conservation online to view the works and accompanying descriptions from the previous years’ winners.

kylie hathaway

4:00 PMARTIFISHALArtifishal is a film about people, rivers, and the fight for the future of wild fish and the environment that supports them. It explores wild salmon’s slide toward extinction, threats posed by fish hatcheries and fish farms, and our continued loss of faith in nature.

Commentary by members of the Martha’s Vineyard Fishermen’s Preservation Trust 




7:30 PM — SEA OF SHADOWS: Sea of Shadows is a feature documentary thriller that follows undercover investigators, environmentalists, journalists, and the Mexican Navy on their desperate last-minute effort to rescue the Earth’s smallest whale-the Vaquita-from extinction. A looming disaster in one of the most spectacular environments on Earth sparks a rescue mission unlike any other in SEA OF SHADOWS, a riveting new documentary with the intensity of a Hollywood thriller. 

Special Guest: Michael Moore, Director of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute


Sunday, May 26

1:00 PM— YOUTH EVENT: INVENTING TOMORROW: Meet passionate teenage innovators from around the globe who are creating cutting-edge solutions to confront the world’s environmental threats–found right in their own backyards–while navigating the doubts and insecurities that mark adolescence. Take a journey with these inspiring teens as they prepare their projects for the largest convening of high school scientists in the world, the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF).

Q&A will follow with our state’s science fair winner, Noah Glasgow, who attended the International Science & Engineering Fair recently.


4:00 PM —THE BIGGEST LITTLE FARM: This film chronicles the eight-year quest of John and Molly Chester as they trade city living for 200 acres of barren farmland and a dream to harvest in harmony with nature. Through dogged perseverance and embracing the opportunity provided by nature’s conflicts, the Chester’s unlock and uncover a biodiverse design for living that exists far beyond their farm, its seasons, and our wildest imagination.


7:30 PM — WOMAN AT WAR: Halla is a fifty-year-old independent woman. But behind the scenes of a quiet routine, she leads a double life as a passionate environmental activist. Known to others only by her alias “The Woman of the Mountain,” Halla secretly wages a one-woman-war on the local aluminum industry. As Halla prepares to abandon her role as saboteur and savior of the Highlands to fulfill her dream of becoming a mother, she decides to plot one final attack to deal the aluminum industry a crippling blow.

Special Guest: Kathie Olsen is a consultant to nonprofits, a program officer for a foundation, a grandmother, a mother, a wife, a painter, and writer.  She is proud to be a grandchild of – a child of – a sister of – and a mother of activists.


For more information please contact or call us at 508-696-9369. Individual Tickets: $12 per movie, $9 for MV Film Society members (except when special pricing), CHILDREN 14 OR YOUNGER ADMITTED FREE

Festival Pass $75, Member’s Festival Pass $65.

Tickets are now available for purchase. Follow the links by clicking the film titles above to purchase tickets. You can purchase an All-Access Pass by clicking here.


The Vineyard Conservation Society is a non-profit membership organization dedicated to preserving the environment, character, and quality of life of Martha’s Vineyard through advocacy, education, and the protection of the Island’s land and waters VCS is the Island’s only conservation organization whose mission includes advocacy and public education, as well as resource protection. We believe that the future health of our Island and its waters will increasingly depend on an informed public.