2022 Film Recommendations

Yenny (left) and Sarah at the 2022 Grassroots Film Fest live event.

Out of the 39 films on this year’s menu, you may be wondering where to start. Well, let me help you.

Hi! I’m Yenny Martin, and as the film selector for this year’s Film Fest, I want to give you an idea of which films not to procrastinate watching–because you simply can’t let September 29th come and go without checking them out. 



Mine left me speechless. It is a powerful, moving, and captivating feature-length film that will permeate the rest of your day. Mine brings a different perspective to Hurricane Katrina, telling the story of the bond between humans and animals. It is a story of survival, courage, and selflessness in the face of extreme circumstances. With remarkable footage, adorable pets, and vulnerable accounts, this film will resonate with all audiences.  





Toxic Neighbour:

By its name, Toxic Neighbour doesn’t sound like the world’s most uplifting film. Don’t let that fool you though! Its filmmakers have pulled off the impossible: they have made it fun to witness a story about toxic pollutants. Not only is the main participant, Eugene Bourgeois, endlessly engaging, but his quirkiness goes hand in hand with the filmmakers’ unique and experimental style.  





Newtok: The Water is Rising:

One of our three feature-length films this year (alongside Gather and Mine), Newtok: The Water is Rising is the kind of film that sticks in your mind long after you’ve watched it. Through melodic, observational shots, the filmmakers take their time telling this story, capturing unfiltered moments of tension and joy.






Hopper’s Day: 

How do you get an entire organization to cry in synchrony? Play Hopper’s Day at a staff meeting (h-hem). It isn’t sad, however. On the contrary, it’s a positive story that’s simply exceedingly beautiful. 

The film becomes even more astonishing when you realize it was created by a college student! Watch a Q&A with filmmaker JingQi Zhang, an undergraduate CalArts student from China, here: [insert link]




Tule Elk:

Tule Elk was produced by Rose Foundation Grantee, Resource Renewal Institute. Along with its stunning cinematography, Tule Elk will open your eyes to the magnificence of this species. Though this is a Northern California-based film, the clash between wildlife and livestock extends throughout the United States and across the world on massive scales. 




All our films this year stand out in unique ways and fulfill distinct purposes. Feel free to get in touch if you’d like some tailored recommendations! Just let me know what you’re in the mood for watching: ymartin@rosefdn.org

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