If you've got a dozen cutting edge documentary makers exploring renewable energy and our addiction to fossil fuels, conventional market wisdom would have you believe they are competitors.
But when you're trying to build a movement to reverse the disastrous impacts of climate change and resource depletion, conventional wisdom no longer applies.
From Gasland II through Cape Spin (exploring the Cape Wind controversy) to Bidder 70 (profiling former TreeHugger person of the year Tim DeChristopher), there's no doubt that documentary film makers are playing a crucial role in highlighting stories that are too often drowned out in the mainstream media.
But how can each film feed in to a broader movement? That's where the Reel Power collaborative comes in. Fostering collaborations between the film makers themselves, and between grass roots activist groups eager to connect the dots between clean energy solutions and the fossil fuel addictions that stand in their way, Reel Power is built on the notion that there's strength in numbers:
Reel Power brings you stories from the frontline of our energy future that will get your community talking and taking action. The stories of climate change are many and as different as each individual that the world's energy crisis touches. From a woman in Kentucky trying to protect her home against the ravages of mountaintop removal, to a college student out West engaging in civil disobedience to monkey wrench an illegal public lands oil and gas lease auction; to a self-sufficient African American Gulf Coast community banding together to save their land and culture – the voices of individuals and the strength of community unite us.
These efforts have already manifested themselves in group showings at youth climate conferences and the like (see the short film below for a taste of what that looks like), and Reel Power has just completed the its Texas leg of Southern Grassroots Tour, bringing Gasland 2 and its director Josh Fox to communities in San Antonio, Dallas and Fort Worth. North Carolina is next on the hit list, with a showing scheduled for October 7th at the Carolina Theater in Durham.
Watch this space. Or, more to the point, go out and watch some movies. Important ones.