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PSU Sustainability Institute Presents: Fantastic Fungi
September 17, 2019 @ 7:00 pmFree
Fantastic Fungi (dir. Louie Schwartzberg, 2018, U.S., 74 min. followed by post-film Q+A with director)
Not Rated | 1h 14min | Documentary | 11 October 2019 (USA)
What do you appreciate most about nature? Next time you stroll through a forest, take time to look down at the earth below for inspiration. There is fascinating complexity right underneath your feet! The fungi kingdom, 3.5 billion years old, is the unsung hero of the natural world and offers much more than meets the eye. Below mushroom fruiting bodies exist a complex subterranean network of mycelium branching out in all directions miles below us. These magical organisms are responsible for decomposing organic matter, creating rich soil, and connecting other forms of life to each other! At the same time, they may offer unique pharmacological properties that science only recently has started to consider. From impassioned enthusiasts to expert mycologists, psychologists to chefs, director Louie Schwartzberg finds people who will help you never look at humble mushrooms the same way again.
Schwartzberg is an award-winning cinematographer with a notable career in time-lapse, high-speed and macro cinematography. His breathtaking films engage with the intersections of humans, nature, and place, while exploring the mysteries and wisdom connecting them. As the kick-off film for our series on “Limits of the Imagination,” we’re excited to use Fantastic Fungi’s beautiful imagery, vibrant color, and almost magical fantasy to ask how the camera lens can help us understand natural systems in new ways–seeing the complexity and interconnections that otherwise are hidden from our daily comprehension. (Filmmaker scheduled to be in attendance.)