October 7 – 10, 2014

Auroville and Pondicherry have the pleasure of hosting the travelling CMS Vatavaran Environment & Wildlife Film Festival and Forum. This festival, based in New Delhi, is organizing film screenings and panel discussions here, in collaboration with Pondicherry University, PondyCAN and Auroville.

Screenings in Auroville will be organized by MMC/CP and Aurofilm.

October 7 – 10 (Tue-Fri), 9.30 – 12.30, same films screened daily

Cinema Paradiso, MMC Auditorium, Town Hall
Sri Aurobindo Auditorium, Bharat Nivas


Cinema Paradiso / MMC: October 7 – 10 (Tue-Fri), 9.30 – 12.30, same films screened daily:

So Shall You Reap

India, Dir. Ajay Bhardwaj, Documentary, 36 mins, Hindi, Telugu, Oriya, Punjabi, English with English subtitles

This is a documentary on genetically engineered (G.E.) seeds, with specific reference to India. It covers aspects, like the technicalities of GE (how seeds are created), the story of GM Cotton in India and their relationship with farmers. The film has famers from Andhra Pradesh and Punjab narrating their experiences and also highlights the serious regulatory shortcomings, irregularities in open-air trials of food crops, etc. The first hand experience of farmers, farmer leaders, views of scientists and agricultural ministers — all point to the many concerns with regard to GE crops. However, disregarding these concerns, the Government of India is espousing GE technology as the way ahead for all of us. The documentary also shows how, in increasing numbers, farmers are adopting ecological agriculture as the real way forward, by declaring themselves GE-free and by not depending on agro-business corporations and their corporate science for their farming activities.



India, Dir. Prema Malini, Documentary, 25 mins, Telugu with English subtitles

The documentary focuses on the depleting salt water lake Pulicat, lying along the Tamil Nadu – Andhra Pradesh coast, with a part of it extending to Chengalpattu district of Tamil Nadu. It chronicles the sad story of some thousands of fishermen who lost their livelihood as the lake kept getting polluted. It is the pathetic saga of the numerous birds that stopped migrating to Pulicat from foreign lands. The ecological imbalance, the lost livelihoods and the increasing pollution of the brackish water of the Pulicat has gone unnoticed and uncared for by the government. The government needs to save the lake from getting more polluted, conserving the bird sanctuary and protecting the livelihoods of the fishermen. The documentary seeks to make heard the silent cry of Pulicat.


Oranges and Mangoes

India, Dir. Priyanka Chhabra, Documentary, 23 mins, Hindi, Marwari, Nepali, Tamil with English subtitles

From the desert to the coast, from the plains to the mountains, people are experiencing a change in the climate. Traditional ways of predicting the weather no longer hold true. In their own ways they are trying to understand these changes and cope with them. Dependent on the environment for their livelihood, climate change is affecting entire ways of living. Listening to folk songs about rain and nature, we travel through villages via the film, “Oranges and Mangoes”, in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal. Conversations with farmers allow us to witness the realities of climate change.


Bal Pandi – A Life for Birds

India, Dir. Suresh Elamon, Documentary, 36 mins, English

Koonthankulam in Tamil Nadu, India, is a unique a bird sanctuary. Situated right in the middle of a human habitation, here, for hundreds of years, humans and birds have co-existed harmoniously. Birds build their nests atop treetops, beneath which village children play. They swim nonchalantly, as men bathe their beasts and women wash clothes. These courageous birds walk up fearlessly to people as they share their food and land with the winged neighbours. In a gentle rustic rhythm, life reverberates in Koonthankulam, where nature conservation is a natural element of a culture that has thrived for centuries. This film tells the story of such an Eden, a remnant of the past, when all creatures had a space of their own. It also tells the story of Bal Pandi, a villager, who can give his life to protect the birds. A self-taught birdwatcher, he loves and fiercely protects the feathered friends who come from far-off lands to Koonthankulam to brood and nest in this corner of the world. With brilliant visuals and high drama, wildlife photographer and naturalist, Suresh Elamon, paints an unforgettable picture — a picture of what could be the world, if only we cared for nature.


Aurofilm / Sri Aurobindo Auditorium, Bharat Nivas: October 9 (Thursday), 19.45

The Last Lions

South Africa, 2011, Dir. Dereck and Beverly Joubert, Documentary, 87 mins, English

From the lush wetlands of Botswana’s Okavango Delta comes the suspense-filled tale of a determined lioness ready to try anything – and willing to risk everything – to keep her family alive. In their new wildlife adventure, “The Last Lions”., filmmakers Dereck and Beverly Joubert follow the epic journey of a lioness named Ma di Tau (Mother of Lions) as she battles to protect her cubs against a daunting onslaught of enemies in order to ensure their survival.