I recently saw a film called “Home Grown”, part of the Green Screen series at Lincoln Center’s Walter Reade Theater. Directed by Robert McFalls, the film is a humbling documentary about the Dervaes family farm. But here’s the clincher- the family farm, which harvests over 6000 lbs of produce annually, is actually located in the city, on their modest urban homestead no larger than a quarter of an acre, in Pasadena, California. They plant crops on every square inch of their backyard and front yard. The family of four-father and three adult children-lives entirely off their urban organic farm. They sell produce to local restaurants, make their own bio-diesel, and use energy generated from solar panels. A true inspiration for this city dweller, who never thought an urban homestead was possible, I highly recommend you check out this movie if you get the chance. For now, you can view the trailer and find out more info here http://www.homegrown-film.com/index.html .
However, the film is more than just about a unique family farm. “Home Grown” reveals how a sustainable lifestyle is not only feasible, but absolutely expedient for a better quality of life, for the future of our planet and as a quiet protest of “the corporate powers that be”.
A better quality of life…In the film, a local chef praises the superior taste and texture of the organic produce he purchases from the Dervaes family farm for his gourmet restaurant. Meanwhile, one of the Dervaes daughters strolls into the backyard garden and snips a few fresh greens for a salad. They may not have cable television, but I haven’t had a decent tasting tomato in years, so it makes you think who is really living a better quality life.
The future of our planet…The Dervaes’ are devoted environmentalists who consciously minimize their impact on the earth with everything they do. They maintain an informative website that promotes sustainable living called http://www.pathtofreedom.com. The future of our planet is in peril, the Dervaes family are an inspiring example of the responsible stewards of the earth we all could be.
A quiet protest…I think we all agree that our leaders haven’t done such a great job of the whole “stewards of the earth” thing. It’s tough to really distinguish between our leaders and our corporations these days. Maybe there is no difference? “Home Grown” reveals how one family fought back by taking matters into their own hands.
“In our society, growing food yourself has become the most radical of acts. It is truly the only effective protest, one that can–and will–overturn the corporate powers that be. By the process of directly working in harmony with nature, we do the one thing most essential to change the world–we change ourselves.”
“Home Grown” and the Dervaes family are an inspiration on many levels, allowing you to take away from their story whatever you are ready and willing to, but unwilling to let you walk away from the film without seeing the world and your place in it a little differently.