Standing on Sacred Ground Film Series

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Standing on Sacred Ground Film Series


Sunday Sep 21 01:30 PM
Sunday Sep 21 03:30 PM
Sunday Sep 21 05:30 PM
Sunday Sep 21 07:30 PM


Doris Duke Theatre


Museum members: $8.00
General Admission: $10.00


About the Film:

Note: Films screen separately. Find showtimes below, then click 'Select Event Date' above to select corresponding screening. Each screening requires separate ticket purchase, which are $10 | $8 museum members.

Save money: Passes for all four screenings are $30 | $24 museum members. Purchase at the box office.

In conjunction with the Dai Ho Chun Endowment for Distinguished Lecturers of the Colleges of Arts & Sciences at the University of Hawai‘i–Mānoa, we screen four films produced by the Sacred Land Film Project told from the viewpoints of eight indigenous communities. In the U.S. and around the world, indigenous people defend human rights and restore the environment in their sacred places, the original protected areas. In a growing worldwide movement, their resistance provides the path to our common future. For more information visit:

Special guest: Director Christopher (Toby) McLeod will introduce each film and lead a post-screening Q+A.


Standing On Sacred Ground | Pilgrims and Tourists 
Directed by Christopher McLeod + Will Parrinello. USA | Russia. 2013. 57 mins
Sept 21 at 1:30pm
Around the world, indigenous communities stand in the way of government megaprojects. In the Russian Republic of Altai, traditional native people create their own mountain parks to rein in tourism and resist a gas pipeline that would cut through a World Heritage Site. In northern California, Winnemem Wintu girls grind herbs on a sacred medicine rock, as elders protest U.S. government plans to enlarge one of the West’s biggest dams and forever submerge this touchstone of a tribe.

Standing On Sacred Ground | Profit and Loss
Directed by Christopher McLeod. USA | 2013 57 mins
Sept 21 at 3:30pm
From Papua New Guinea’s rainforests to Canada’s tar sands, Profit and Loss exposes industrial threats to native peoples’ health, livelihood, and cultural survival. In Papua New Guinea, a Chinese government–owned nickel mine has violently relocated villagers to a taboo sacred mountain, built a new pipeline and refinery on contested clan land, and is dumping mining waste into the sea. In Alberta, First Nations people suffer from rare cancers as their traditional hunting grounds are stripmined to unearth the world’s third-largest oil reserve. Indigenous people tell their own stories—and confront us with the ethical consequences of our culture of consumption.

Standing on Sacred Ground | Fire and Ice
Directed by Christopher McLeod. USA | 2013 57 mins
Sept 21 at 5:30pm
From Ethiopia to Peru, indigenous customs protect biodiversity on sacred lands under pressure from religious conflicts and climate change. In Ethiopia’s Gamo Highlands, scientists confirm the benefits of traditional stewardship even as elders witness the decline of spiritual practices that have long protected trees, meadows, and mountains. Tensions with evangelical Christians over a sacred meadow erupt into a riot. In the Peruvian Andes, the Q’eros, on a pilgrimage to a revered glacier, are driven from their ritual site by intolerant Catholics. Q’eros potato farmers face a more ominous foe: global warming is melting glaciers, their water source. 

Standing On Sacred Ground | Islands of Sanctuary
Directed by Christopher McLeod. USA. 2013. 57 mins
Sept 21 at 7:30pm*
Indigenous activists in Hawai‘i and Australia reclaim land from government and the military in a growing international movement to defend human rights and protect the environment. In Australia’s Northern Territory, Aboriginal clans maintain Indigenous Protected Areas and resist the destructive effects of a mining boom. In Hawai‘i, indigenous ecological and spiritual practices are used to restore the sacred island of Kaho‘olawe after 50 years of military use as a bombing range. Featuring Luana Busby-Neff and Davianna McGregor.

*Islands of Sanctuary also screens with Bridge to the Future on Sept. 23 at 1pm + Sept. 24 at 7:30pm

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