'Public Trust'

"Public Trust" examines the fight over public lands in the United States. The film has its world premiere on Monday.

The Big Sky Documentary Film Festival heads into Monday with a full line-up of options. 


Films at the Wilma, Elks Lodge and ZACC, beginning at 1 p.m.

Shorts galore: Ten short docs in two screenings. Wilma, 1 p.m.; ZACC, 5:30 p.m.

“Mr. Toilet, the World’s #2 Man” — Born in the Singapore slums, with firsthand knowledge of the horrors of improper toilets, entrepreneur Jack Sim sacrifices his comfortable life for an endless battle against the world’s largest man-made crisis: s---. From the outside, he’s an eccentric jokester, but his goal to alleviate a global sanitation problem is serious work. Wilma, 3:30 p.m.

“Sunless Shadows” — In an Iranian juvenile detention center, adolescent girls serve sentences for the crime of murdering fathers, husbands or male family members. The all-female prison is also a shelter from an aggressively male-dominated society. Through frank conversations and playful interactions, the girls open up about the consequences of, and sometimes the reasons for, their action. Elks Lodge, 4 p.m.

“Public Trust” — In a time of growing polarization, there is one thing a majority of Americans still share and agree on: the protection of our 640 million acres of public lands. These wild places are intrinsic to our national identity, offer a solution to mitigate the climate crisis, provide habitat to animals large and small, and offer the most magnificent landscapes in the world. The film makes a clear case for protecting our public lands and preventing the loss of our shared American experience and heritage. World premiere. Wilma, 6 p.m.

“Push” — Housing prices are skyrocketing in cities around the world. Incomes are not. This film sheds light on a new kind of faceless landlord, our increasingly unlivable cities, and an escalating crisis that affects us all. This is not gentrification; it’s a different kind of monster. ZACC, 8 p.m.

“Big Fur” — A wry portrait of an eccentric artist-hero, immersed in his defining project. Taxidermist Ken Walker has an unshakable belief that eventually he’ll find true love. Or the hairy, 800-pound validation of his life’s quest. Can he find both while building a life-sized version of Bigfoot? Wilma, 8:30 p.m.

“Lovemobil” — 26 VW caravans line a dark section of Germany’s Autobahn, rented out to prostitutes mostly from Eastern Europe and Africa. Through a combination of sensitive observation and intimate interviews, the film tells a story about their pasts, their fears, and their hopes for the future in the harsh context of globalized capitalism. Elks Lodge, 9 p.m.

Filmmakers in attendance

Q&A following film screening

“The Sign Project” — Sarah Ginsburg, director/editor/cinematographer; Will Lennon, producer. Shorts Block #5, Wilma, 1 p.m.

“Healing From Hate: Battle for the Soul of a Nation” — Peter Hutchinson, director/producer. ZACC, 3 p.m.

“A Syrian Woman | Human Stories From Jordan” — Louis Syad DeCaprio, director. Elks Lodge, 4 p.m.

“Public Trust” — David Garret Byars, director. Wilma, 6 p.m.

“By The River” — Keely Kernan, director. “To Keep As One” — Katie Basile, director. Elks Lodge, 6:30 p.m.

“Push” — Post-film discussion hosted by film sponsor Homeward Inc. ZACC, 8 p.m.

“Big Fur” – Dan Wayne, director/producer. “A Bold Experiment” — Alex Milan and Andrew Alden Miller, co-directors/producers. Wilma, 8:30 p.m.


DocShop begins at the Residence Inn. Highlights include a master class with Bill and Turner Ross and a presentation on grant applications from Toni Bell of the International Documentary Association.

Festival HQ and Box Office at ZACC, 216 W. Main St. Full schedule of films and events: bigskyfilmfest.org.