Saturday, Oct 26, 2019
Location: Redstone Theater
Introduced by environmental advocate and author Dr. Eric Sanderson (Mannahatta). Followed by a conversation with Dr. Sanderson and filmmaker Mikael Kristersson
Dir. Mikael Kristersson. 1998, 89 mins. 35mm from First Run. Kestrel’s Eye is a film that is at once about who is being watched and who is doing the watching. A Swedish Oscar-winner for its cinematography, Mikael Kristersson shot Kestrel’s Eye in one of the small, medieval cities of Skanör-Falsterbo on the southwest tip of the Scandinavian Peninsula (not far from Copenhagen). The watchers are a group of falcons living in the steeple of a church. A technical marvel, Kristersson uses image and sound to weave together a story of the cycles of life and death. Its deeply tender portrait of falcons is filled with both the overwhelming quiet and cacophony of the natural world.
Mikael Kristersson is an award-winning filmmaker, director, and conservationist. Kristersson grew up on a historic farm in Falsterbo, Sweden, located a few hundred meters from world-famous Falsterbo Bird Observatory. Fascinated by the globally unique phenomenon in Falsterbo of millions of birds migrating from Northern Europe to Africa and back again, Kristersson’s artistic career has been accompanied by a lifelong dedication to environmental stewardship. His first theatrically released feature film Pica Pica (1987) achieved great success with critics and audiences and was named “Surprise of the Year” at the festival Cinema du Réel in Paris. Kristersson’s second feature film, the prizewinning and critically-acclaimed Kestrel’s Eye (1998), was seen by over a million cinema and television viewers, and invited to some thirty festivals worldwide. Among other awards, Kestrel’s Eye received the premiere prize for documentary at the Munich, Marseilles, and at Nordisk Panorama film festivals. Kristersson’s third feature film Light Year (2008) was named “Best Swedish Film of the Year, All Categories” by Sydsvenskan’s critic Jan Aghed, was Sweden’s nomination for the Nordic Council Film Prize 2009, and won the first prize at the science festival Mostra de Ciencia e Cinema in Spain in the same year.
Eric W. Sanderson is Senior Conservation Ecologist in the Global Conservation Programs of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), a landscape ecologist, and a conservation biologist. He is the author of Mannahatta: A Natural History of New York City (Abrams, 2009) and Terra Nova: The New World After Oil, Cars, and Suburbs (Abrams, 2013), as well as editor of several edited volumes. Dr. Sanderson began WCS’s Welikia Project, an online forum on the historical ecology of the New York City region to help the public envision climate-resilient designs. He is an expert in species and landscape conservation planning. Dr. Sanderson is currently the Fellow for the New York Public Library’s Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers where he is working on the sequel to Mannahatta, about the ecology of New York City prior to European colonization and urbanization.