Water, Water Anywhere? Water Crisis Doc 'FLOW' Tonight at Belcourt
by Jim Ridley
on Fri, Oct 24, 2008 at 8:30 AM
Even if you've seen so many environmental-alarm documentaries recently that your ears are ringing, FLOW: For Love of Water is still worth checking out—especially tonight at the Belcourt, where a TDEC official and a clean-water advocate will address some of the questions the movie raises. That's because this unnerving doc hits much closer to home than a melting ice cap or a shrinking glacier. The war, in director Irena Salina's broadside, has arrived at our kitchen door.
Salina's doc—picked up for release by Oscilloscope Pictures, the distribution imprint launched by Beastie Boy Adam Yauch—envisions a Mad Max future where drinkable water, not petroleum, is the substance in devastatingly short supply. While companies privatize the water supply in some of the poorest countries on earth, taking away what most of us take for granted at even a public water fountain, the bottled-water biz brings the devastation home—sucking up aquifers, polluting the surrounding habitat, gobbling gas for transport, and lining landfills with wasted plastic bottles.
"A lot of times, this water isn't even any better than tap water," says FLOW associate producer Matt Parker, a Nashville native who's gone on to a career producing indie films such as the award-winning drama Loggerheads. One of the movie's villains is Nestlé, which owns a water-bottling plant as close by as Red Boiling Springs in Macon County.
Parker won't be at tonight's 7 p.m. screening, but he's pleased that Paul Davis and Jorge Aguilar will. Davis is director of the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation's Division of Water Pollution Control, and TDEC certainly faces some water-pollution issues in Middle Tennessee. Aguilar represents the Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit consumer organization Food & Water Watch.
FLOW begins a week-long run tonight in Hillsboro Village. And if you stick around the Belcourt later this evening, you can catch another warning about environmental devastation. At midnight, Troma founder Lloyd Kaufman will present his magnum opus Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead—an urgent wake-up call to the dangers of situating a fried-chicken franchise on Indian burial ground.