A documentary film by PeÅ Holmquist and Suzanne Khardalian, 2005. 73 min.
Her opponents call her “The Green Killer”. They gave her “The Bullshit Award” for sustaining poverty. TIME says she is a hero of our times, an icon for youngsters all over the world.
The film is about Vandana Shiva, Indian environmental activist and nuclear physicist, who was awarded the Right Livelihood Award in 1993. It’s a film on globalisation and patenting, on genetic engineering, bio-piracy, indigenous knowledge.
In this documentary, the filmmakers follow Vandana Shiva over a two-year period, from her organic farm at the foot of the Himalayas to institutions of power all over the world. Here Vandana Shiva does battle with one of her toughest opponents, Monsanto, a huge American biotech company, when they try to patent an ancient Indian strain of wheat. Together with Dalits she tries to close down a Coca-Cola plant in Kerala, in a conflict involving groundwater pollution. In this film Vandana Shiva also tackles the question of farmers’ suicide, a backlash of the globalisation.
The filmmakers describe Monsanto from the inside and arrange what proves a shaking meeting between Vandana Shiva and Barun Mitra, liberal think-tank, lobbyist and fierce critic of Vandana Shiva – and the man who gave her the “Bullshit Prize”.
PeÅ Holmquist and Suzanne Khardalian are Swedish independent filmmakers who have directed more than 50 documentaries, among them several award-winning films, like Gaza Ghetto, Back to Ararat, Unsafe Ground, Her Armenian Prince, From Opium to Chrysanthemums, My Dad the Inspector and I Hate Dogs – the last survivor.
On the film:
“What a woman, what strength, what optimism...! It’s so exhilarating to see this film.”
Aftonbladet, major Swedish evening paper
BULLSHIT shows us another side of the Third World... Like a small hot, colourful steam engine, she puffs along, the Indian environment activist Vandana Shiva... People, in what we in the West call the Third World, are all too often shown as victims – an image that Vandana Shiva does away with entirely.”
Svenska Dagbladet, major Swedish daily paper
If you need cheering up, you should link “Darwin’s Nightmare” to PeÅ Holmquist and Suzanne Khardalian’s “Bullshit”, which describes Indian Vandana Shiva’s struggle – filling all with enthusiasm – against as yet unproven-to-be-safe gene manipulation and against major companies’ continual attempts to patent all manner of crops in order to take over the world market, something that would result in disaster.
Dagens Nyheter, major Swedish daily paper
BULLSHIT is a fantastic and inspiring film. Vandana Shiva deserves the Nobel Prize, but people like her, and Noam Chomsky who I made a film about a few years ago, are always overlooked.
Peter Wintonick, Canadian filmmaker