The documentary opens on a farm facing great devastation and the looming question, ‘How did we get here?’ Do the farmers then ask if attempting to farm in harmony with nature is an impossible dream? We cut back to 2010 and meet the farmers, Molly and John. They were the perfect, happy, couple living in Santa Monica and working in their chosen professions. At the time, Molly is a chef and John’s a cameraman who works extensively on wildlife films. Their professions kind of come together when they realize that healthy farming and cooking more traditional foods would benefit them both. Why work separately when they can work together? It’s not an easy task but people used to grow all their own food. Perhaps it’s time to get back to that. They adopt a dog named Todd and make him a promise that their home would be his last. Before long, they’re forced out of their apartment because of his barking. They look at each other and realize that the time might be ripe to try that farming thing. It’s their purpose. They start digging into what it would take, find a wealth of information on the internet and even find investors in their idea of living off the land. If this idea could spread, imagine the world we could have.
With climate change facing us today, this movie will have a long life on cable channels and should be falling off the lips of everyone who’s interested in educating the public about how and why certain creatures must live and how and why humans have to change the way they see things. We can’t go on living as we have. We’ve always thought the planet could sustain us, but this movie proves mother nature only has so much to give if we don’t treat her properly. It’s fascinatingly frightening to watch as it points out what we can do to save ourselves while at the same time, acknowledging the fact that we won’t do those things. Molly and John find 200 acres of nearly lifeless land about an hour north of L.A. in which to build their farm. They hire a consultant, a guru of sorts, to bring the farm back to life. He shows them that their soil is dead and teaches them the key to bringing the entire farm back to life… worm rich manure that feeds everything. Microorganisms. He explains to the young couple that, ‘Plants build soil. Without plants, there would never be fertility.’ They end up with a gorgeous farm filled with seventy-five varieties of stone fruit, chickens, pigs, cows, sheep, ducks, and horses. They become very successful but remember what I said when the review started.
I don’t want to give too much away about the movie but I must say, see this if you like documentaries and if you realize that the world needs to be balanced. With all of the problems that Molly and John face, nature has a natural fix for them. Wait until you see what they do about the snails. Oh, my goodness! And you had all but given up hope! By the way, before the movie is over, their motto becomes, ‘Poop is Gold!’ You’ll appreciate the dialogue in the film that explains what they learned and the explanations for it with deliberate detail. We go through year after year of their trying to manage the farm, what they gain and what they lose. At times the film is heartbreaking, at times it’s simply beautiful… what it will never be is dull. You’ll love the remarkable photography and the animal pairings. Our planet needs us and this movie should be shown in every theatre, boardroom, and classroom across the globe! The subject is too important to ignore.
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