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ElekTrik Zoo wins best short film with Locked at 6th GNG Green Earth Film Festival
by Bradley Bartz
Los Angeles CA (SPX) Oct 25, 2018

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Locked is a film about a contentious century-long battle between big commerce and the Louisiana wetlands. The power of Blue Oyster Cult shines when they repeat, "History shows again and again how nature points out the folly of man. Godzilla." Indeed, the Lock system connecting Lake Pontchartrain to the Mississippi river was a monster project done when brute force was used for the pleasure of man.

Local Urban Ecologist Dr. Josh Lewis tells the one-hundred-year tumultuous history of the Industrial Canal and Lock that dissect the infamous 9th Ward of New Orleans. He describes the wide-reaching effects of how Louisiana does water borne transportation and succinctly outlines how business elites, the Port of New Orleans and the Army Corps of Engineers practiced irresponsible urban planning and caused repeated catastrophic flooding in the Greater New Orleans region for over a century.

The film includes dramatic hundred-year-old historical moving pictures depicting events unfolding as citizens experienced them at the time of happening and lays out how the effected minority communities have been resisting the destruction of life and land for decades.

The mistake is about to be repeated with a proposal to replace the lock.

This history styled Call to Action documentary is aimed at mobilizing our city and our country around the intersection of climate change mitigation at our coastal communities and our national borders and environmental justice.

A victory along the way for Patrick and Daneeta Loretta Jackson, Directors at Eletrick Zoo Films, was receiving is the Best Short Film at the 6th Annual GNG Green Earth Festival. Both Patrick and Daneeta hope to propel this story to more minds.

Loyola Marymount University's new media campus in "Silicon Beach of Playa Vista" hosted the festival. The generous donations of Dan and Susan Gottlieb made the Green Earth Festival possible. The sponsor also had a film introducing more to the Gottlieb Native Garden, which is open to the public in Spring during the Theodore Payne Native Plant Garden Tour. Check out www.thegottliebnaivegarden.com.

The Friday night showing of Locked was with five other great earth related films and animations. Jeff Bridges narrated "Living in the Future's Past". The melodic qualities of Bridges voice combined with stunning nature images made me sure that if he snapped his fingers I'd become a chicken.

Turns out that it was the photogenic Fish Owl journey that allowed all to take flight. The discovery of limited nests followed professional Ornithologists and local hunters along Siberian frozen rivers. The "K" mark of the owls brings grins and serious looks at the camera.

The fun was changing the story to find the lost photographer. One wonders about what you do between shots when waiting for months in the snow to capture images.

The smiles of exhilaration bring levity to the screen.

Dave Weeshoff and Dr. Eric G. Strauss, Ph.D. led the "Reflections of Exploitation" when talking about the Russian film Fish Owl Wanted.

Dave explained, "The fish owl is unique and the largest owl on the planet. Most of the Fish Owl's life is spent on the ground fishing, much more so than other owls."

Dave looked out at the audience and said, "This is the Year of the Bird."

Birds are the sentinel of the climate. With over 10,500 species with different, instinctual reactions to the climate will move for survival. Dr. Strauss expanded with, "Birds are bio-indicative and vote quickly."

Tuned in, Dropped out ... of the sky is the Fish Owl.

Lisa Fimiani, the Dan and Susan Gottlieb Environmental Leadership Fellow at Loyola Marymount University's Center for Urban Resilience (CURes) saw similarities between the historic Ballona Wetlands, just north of Loyola Marymount University, and Locked. Restoration of the remaining Ballona Wetlands has been stalled by years of analysis and indecision. The Army Corp of Engineers seems to need to different name, "The Army of Corporate Engineers", as again we see long-term delays to heal and short-term decisions for destruction.

"The Army Corp of Engineers has a real opportunity to help bring back Ballona, and we in the local environmental community hope they will work with the State and other critical partners to make a decision soon about which alternative plan to implement," said Lisa. She continued with, "We hope to learn more about the efforts in Locked and apply them here."

Daneeta emailed from New Orleans and said, "I thought you might be interested as it's an environmental festival and because of your interest in the film industry. We are trying to raise awareness about poor urban planning within coastal communities. The fragility of these communities must take priority over unnecessary projects. Our leaders must make better decisions that put people above profit."

Daneeta was right. Yea Team! Once I previewed the film I got more interested in the Locked subject and continue my joy in watching ElekTrik Zoo continue to work hard. More importantly is they keep telling great stories.

Gregory Ruzzin, Special Assistant to the Dean for Playa Vista, Director/Producer: www.themagicchair.org, and Associate Professor in Film and Television Production, is thrilled to be using the new venue for the School of Film and Television to showcase films and festivals like these.

Ruzzin, who has spent the last two years collaborating with LMU leaders on the buildout and programming of the new campus said, "The School of Film and Television is excited to be able to partner with the Center of Urban Resilience to provide cutting edge environmental film festivals showcasing films like Locked."

Related Links
ElekTrik Zoo
Water News - Science, Technology and Politics

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Syracuse geologists contribute to new understanding of Mekong River incision
Syracuse NY (SPX) Oct 22, 2018
An international team of earth scientists has linked the establishment of the Mekong River to a period of major intensification of the Asian monsoon during the middle Miocene, about 17 million years ago, findings that supplant the assumption that the river incised in response to tectonic causes. Their findings are the subject of a paper published in Nature Geoscience on Oct. 15. Gregory Hoke, associate professor and associate chair of Earth sciences, and recent SU doctoral student Gregory Ruetenik ... read more

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