On a remote patch of the Mojave Desert, amidst dusty tumbleweeds and rangy Joshua Trees, sits an anomaly: a high school where educators believe empathy, life skills, and the constancy of a caring adult are the differences that will give at-risk students command of their fates. On any given day, principal Vonda Viland calls kids at the crack of dawn to see if they’ll make it to school. And if they need a ride? Well, she’ll pick them up. Vonda knows each student’s challenges and coaches them tirelessly, never fostering false hopes. Her philosophy combines loving compassion with realism, and given her school’s rising graduation rate, it seems to be working.
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Camp Beaverton is the Home for Wayward Girls, the only queer, all women, trans-inclusive, sex positive theme camp set within Burning Man, an 8-day experimental art festival that encourages radical self expression found deep within the Nevada desert. The Beavers create a safe space to explore their boundaries while they build a community of friendship, trust, and lifelong relationships.
In this provocative documentary, worldwide experts in the fields of futurology, anthropology, neuroscience and philosophy consider the impact of technological advances on the two certainties of human life: work and death. Charting human developments from early man, past the Industrial Revolution, to the digital age and beyond, THE FUTURE OF WORK AND DEATH looks at the astonishing exponential rate at which mankind creates technologies to ease the process of living. As we embark on the next phase of our ‘advancement’ with automation and artificial intelligence driving the transformation from man to machine, the film gives a shockingly realistic look into the future of human life.
The turbulent life of soul and blues singer, the late Joe Cocker. A former gas fitter from Sheffield, catapulted to world stardom in 1969 at Woodstock with his legendary performance of the Beatles song, “A Little Help from My Friends”. But in the early 1970s, Joe Cocker’s inner demons nearly killed him. Overcoming his struggles with alcohol and drugs, he rebuilt his reputation as “one of the great primal rock and roll vocalists of all time” (Billy Joel’s description). The film mixes Joe Cocker’s own words, with rare archive. His wife (Pam Cocker) & family, friends and the legendary songwriters and musicians he collaborated with, tell Joe Cocker’s story. The film has raw, historic, electric performance footage throughout. Extensive interviews of key people through his life include: Pam Cocker, Ben Fong-Torres (Rolling Stone magazine editor), Randy Newman, Jimmy Webb, Billy Joel, Rita Coolidge, Deric Dyer, Glyn Johns, and numerous others.
In an invisible territory at the margins of society, at the border between anarchy and illegality, lives a wounded community that is trying to respond to a threat: of being forgotten by political institutions and having their rights as citizens trampled. Disarmed veterans, taciturn adolescents, drug addicts trying to escape addiction through love, ex-special forces soldiers still at war with the world, floundering young women and future mothers, and old people who have not lost their desire to live. Through this hidden pocket of humanity, the door opens to the abyss of today’s America.