12 October 2021

From dust to dust

 Today's blog is  a guest post from filmmaker James Bartlett, who is looking for support for a short climate film, From dust to dust. 

Australia has long been dragging its feet on the global stage in our obligation to dramatically reduce our carbon footprint to zero. As the efforts of other nations begin to dwarf our own, it has become painfully clear that our elected government cares little about the impacts of climate change. What are the implications of this ambivalence and where are we heading?

From Dust to Dust is a third-year-graduation project by students at the Australian Film, Television and Radio School (AFTRS) that explores these issues. This 12-minute drama, with elements of absurdity and black comedy, takes place in a near future; an environment that is barely habitable after decades of abuse and ignorance. Small towns are suffering the effects of the climate crisis, where fresh water has become increasingly difficult to attain. For some rural areas of Australia, this is already a reality.

The Story:  In the fictional outback town of Houston, the search for water has become a grim task as the societal systems we take for granted are beginning to evaporate. Overwhelmed, the town's residents feel overwhelmed and their energy is simply applied to surviving.  Some cling on to a thin shred of hope that the rain will come, the river will flow, and people will return to the once bustling town. But this denies the future reality for the town in a hotter world.

A lone postman on a pedal bike rides west from town to town delivering letters that delineate the end and edge of a once habitable of the world. It is a futile task that is becoming harder as each town he visits is more desolate than the last. Despite his tribulations, he turns a blind eye to the fate of this world in which he works, until he stumbles upon the last remaining resident of the town Houston; a fanatic preacher with a secret buried beneath the desert sands.

Why make a film about these issues? As filmmakers we believe that screen stories have a duty to raise awareness. We are a small group of passionate young people wanting to make art that reflects and addresses issues we deem imperative. Through the medium of film we wish to share our vision of the future and re-engage those that have become exhausted and ambivalent to the greatest challenge facing us.  We aim to capture the reality of climate change in Australia and speculate on its repercussions if the problem in full measure has continues to be ignored even as society is severely disrupted.

From Dust to Dust paints a picture of our future existence if selfishness and cognitive dissonance accelerate the destruction of our environment to the point of no return.

Crowdfunding. We are currently running a crowdfunding campaign through the Australian Cultural Fund, where donations above $2 are tax deductible. All donations received will fund the production of the film. We aim to shoot in areas of regional NSW. Most of our budget will go towards hiring equipment, transport and accommodation. It is our goal to ensure that, in whatever small way possible, we are contributing to the economies and local businesses of the regional towns that we film in.

If you are willing to support us, we would appreciate any donation enormously. If you have any questions about donations, please contact us through our Instagram page: https://www.instagram.com/dusttodustfilm/ or support the project through Australian Cultural Fund crowdfunding:

Thank you!