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Shining a light on environmental issues

17 Jan 2020

Shining a light on environmental issues

This February a short film fest, curated by Gold Coast Film Festival, couldn’t be timelier as environmental disasters dominate the news cycle.

These five thought-provoking and engaging documentaries shine a light on the realities of climate change and our relationship with the planet.


At the intersection of art and science, this feature documentary from the multiple-award winning team of Jennifer Baichwal, Nicholas de Pencier and Edward Burtynsky, was four years in the making.

The film follows the research of an international body of scientists who, after nearly 10 years of research, argue that the Holocene Epoch gave way to the Anthropocene Epoch in the mid-twentieth century, because of profound and lasting human changes to the Earth.


The epic story about the meeting between the beautiful polar bear mother and a Norwegian wildlife filmmaker. During a four-year journey, since their first encounter in 2013 at her Arctic home on Svalbard, Asgeir Helgestad has followed her as she struggles to survive and to raise her cubs.

With feelings alternating between hope and despair for her and her small cubs, the film explores the question “this planet is home to all of us, can we afford to ignore it?”


A true story of dedicated people who are prepared to put their lives on the line for a chance to make difference in the world. Newlywed zookeepers Jim and Jean Thomas packed up their safe suburban life in Australia and braved the steamy jungle of Papua New Guinea to attempt an almost impossible task: they travelled to one of the most remote places on earth to convince the local people not to hunt an endangered animal that had been on their staple diet for centuries.


Thousands of semi-trailers crisscross the country in the dead of night delivering goods through the darkness to stores, warehouses and factories nationwide. But some of them carry an unsuspected and highly unusual cargo. Honey bees. Tens of billions of them are transported back and forth from one end of the United States to the other in a unique annual migration that’s indispensable to the feeding of America. One out of every three bites we eat, the growth of almost all our fruits, nuts and vegetables, would be impossible without pollination from bees. A new documentary feature presents the fascinating and untold story and warns that the bees are in serious danger.


Through an intimate inquiry with leading business, entertainment, and thought leaders, along with the voices of global citizens from all walks of life, the film explores new personal, systemic and collective models of success, prosperity, contribution and what it will take for humanity to create a thriving future.

Weriseup also includes a short film, Yarn 2058, a collaboration between local artist Melissa Spratt and local filmmaker Salvador Cantellano (who’s recent work Mapped GC2040 was featured during our HOME festival)

Check out the full program for the Environmental Impact Docfest here.