Nominations for the 83rd Academy Awards were announced this morning, and among the nominees for Documentary Feature is "Waste Land", a moving film that, given the fact that it takes place almost entirely on top of the world's largest landfill, should be of particular interest to those working in our industry.
The synopsis from the film's site:
Filmed over nearly three years, WASTE LAND follows renowned artist Vik Muniz as he journeys from his home base in Brooklyn to his native Brazil and the world's largest garbage dump, Jardim Gramacho, located on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro. There he photographs an eclectic band of “catadores” — self-designated pickers of recyclable materials. Muniz’s initial objective was to “paint” the catadores with garbage. However, his collaboration with these inspiring characters as they recreate photographic images of themselves out of garbage reveals both the dignity and despair of the catadores as they begin to re-imagine their lives. Director Lucy Walker (DEVIL’S PLAYGROUND, BLINDSIGHT, COUNTDOWN TO ZERO) has great access to the entire process and, in the end, offers stirring evidence of the transformative power of art and the alchemy of the human spirit.
I've seen snippets of the film but not the whole thing (it doesn't seem to be screening in Atlanta any time soon, so I may have to wait for the DVD). Based on what I've seen, would highly recommend you seek it out as well. If you have seen it, what did you think?