The Nature Makers (Scott Saunders, 2019) US

Film review by Christiana Leonardo.  Viewed at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival 2020.

Day one of SBIFF I attended a morning seminar that the director, Scott Saunders, spoke at, prompting me to attend his film later that day, The Nature Makers.  I have nothing but praise for this three part nature activist documentary.

The Nature Makers is an informative experience showing the work that some humans are doing to protect wildlife populations who are suffering at the destruction to their habitation by the effects of human development. Tending to the crane migration, keeping a species of fish alive and repopulating in the Grand Canyon, and relocating prairie dogs. Sky, Water and Earth. The scale at which the work is in demand to protect animals is insurmountable and this film shows the blood sweat, tears, humanity and love the work entails. Incredible editing, on all fronts, kept the film moving and breathing and interactive at all parts, enveloping the audience in the nature and emotions of those portrayed on the screen. The sound was spectacular, wholly natural, and the dreamy footage of the cranes still plays in my head weeks later. Comments from the audience of Oktay Ortobasi’s cinematography made it clear these images moved and taught everyone in the room.

I this stunning, engaging documentary should be seen on the big screen where much of the beauty can be soaked in. This is one I hope becomes widely spread to teach and to show.


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