Walking Mountains brings last Sustainable Film installment, 'Eating Up Easter,' to the internet | VailDaily.com

Walking Mountains brings last Sustainable Film installment, ‘Eating Up Easter,’ to the internet

"Eating Up Easter" stands out from other documentaries about Rapanui because it is told by a native to the island.
Special to the Daily

Walking Mountains Science Center typically celebrates the finale of its Sustainable Film Series in April, but like all the other events, the physical screening has been canceled. But this month’s has been moved to a virtual event, held for a full week instead of just one night.

In celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day, Walking Mountains is hosting a virtual screening of “Eating up Easter” from Monday, April 20 to Friday, April 24 at walkingmountains.org/virtualfilms. To access the film, guests should use the password GreatFilm.

“Eating Up Easter” is about Rapa Nui, or as it is commonly known, Easter Island. Rapa Nui is a remote island off the coast of Chile that has been long been the focus of research and documentaries. Findings from these endeavors have both mystified and exploited its famous Moai statues.

Native Rapanui filmmaker Sergio Mata’u Rapu created “Eating Up Easter” to emphasize the cultural, social, historical and ecological impacts of tourism on the island, and how they’re all intertwined. Rapu’s special viewpoint as a native to Rapanui brings a personal and poignant angle to the story, as he frames the film as a letter to his newborn child.

Easter Island has long been used as a classic example of environmental degradation and limited island resources in biology courses, however, this is only part of the complicated story of Rapa Nui. As more people learn of the island, tourism and traffic to the island increases, compounding the problem. 

But it’s not all doom and gloom. “Eating Up Easter” also shares some positive examples of how the tourism industry has impacted the community through key examples, including a nonprofit music school run by a Rapanui couple working to educate young Rapanui musicians and teaching them the native language and culture. It also features a Rapanui ecologist who works at the recycling facility on the island. The people featured in the film bring life to a problem that is often framed as a one-dimensional environmental issue.

Visit http://www.walkingmountains.org/virtualfilms and enter the password GreatFilm to view next week. For more information about the film, visit http://www.eatingupeaster.com.

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