Friday, May 28, 2010

Short Film: The Commoners

I'm going to start posting about interesting-looking short films, when the DVDs are somewhat easily available. This one is.

"The Commoners," directed by Jessica Anne Bardsley and Penny Lane

In 1890, one man began his attempt to release every bird ever mentioned by William Shakespeare into Central Park. Almost all of the birds died, with the exception of the Starling. Today, the Starling is one of the commonest birds in America and its release is widely considered a major environmental disaster.

In the aftermath of this absurdly successful accident, "The Commoners" contemplates the purist rhetoric surrounding invasive species. Featuring beautiful murmuration footage, archival maps, and hand drawings, this film is also about the paths people forge through history, and the ways that people impact the natural world, intentionally or not.

DVD has a color insert designed by Penny Lane with drawings by Jessica Bardsley, and a screenprinted image on the DVD.

You can buy the DVD through either Jessica Bardsley's or Penny Lane's respective websites.

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