Chicago suffered the worst heat disaster in U.S history in 1995, when 739 residents – mostly elderly and black – died over the course of one week. As COOKED links the heat wave’s devastation back to the underlying manmade disaster of structural racism, it delves deep into one of our nation’s biggest growth industries: Disaster Preparedness. Judith Helfand uses her signature serious-yet-quirky-style as your friendly narrator to forge inextricable connections between the cataclysmic natural disasters we’re willing to see and prepare for, and the slow-motion disasters we’re not.
Director/Producer Judith Helfand is best known for her ability to take the dark worlds of chemical exposure, heedless corporate behavior and environmental injustice and make them personal, highly-charged and entertaining. Her films include The Uprising of ‘34, Blue Vinyl, A Healthy Baby Girl, and Everything’s Cool. Helfand co-founded Working Films in 1999 and Chicken & Egg Pictures in 2005. Helfand helped launch the Cucalorus Works-in-Progress lab to support social justice docs by African-American filmmakers.
Director: Leah Shore / 4:25
EXTREMOPHILES [ĭk-strē’me-fīl’s] noun: organisms that exist when nothing else can survive. A portrait film about the pollution in Brooklyn and beyond.