From award-winning journalist Jared Flesher comes SOURLANDS, a film that weaves a provocative tale of ecology, energy, and agriculture.
From a deep forest surrounded by the sprawling suburbs of New Jersey, Flesher's film lays out a story that feels simultaneously intimate and expansive. In the Sourlands, it's a rampaging deer herd, invasive plants, and wholesale habitat destruction threatening the local ecosystem. Farmers in the surrounding valley struggle against high land prices, high property taxes, and increasingly erratic weather patterns. A local entrepreneur - the one highlighted in the film is trying to get a clean-tech company off the ground - struggles to find a market for his innovative product. But pay close attention, and the challenges facing this community look a lot like the challenges facing ecosystems, farmers, and visionary entrepreneurs everywhere.
The message of cautious hope presented in the film is just as universal: To start solving complicated environmental problems, we need to forgo quick fixes and start restoring the natural world - and people's connection to it - from the forest floor up.
SOURLANDS is an official selection of the Princeton Environmental Film Festival, the Black Bear Film Festival, and the Somewhat North of Boston Film Festival.