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Fall bioethics film series focuses on ‘Wildlife, Wilderness and Human Values’

August 30, 2007

ASU’s popular Bioethics Film Series returns this fall with the theme “Wildlife, Wilderness and Human Values.”

Films following those themes will be shown on Thursday evenings in Life Sciences Center E-104 on the Tempe campus. A discussion with invited guests follows each film. The discussions will focus on the ethical, social and legal implications of bioethics, including the cultural dimensions. Each film showing and discussion, presented by the Center for Biology and Society, will take place from 5:15 to 8:15 p.m.

The schedule includes:

• Sept. 27: “Counting Sheep” (not rated by the Motion Picture Association of America). This film looks at the question of what happens when a protected predator threatens an endangered prey. High in California’s Sierra Nevada, the last few native bighorn sheep are fighting for survival, amid threats from mountain lions. Two remarkable men are on the side of the bighorn – an oboe-playing mountain man and a mountain lion tracker of skill and instinct.

• Oct. 25: “Mosquito Coast” (rated PG). This is the story of an eccentric and dogmatic inventor who sells his house and takes his family to Central America to build an ice factory in the middle of the jungle. Conflicts with his family, a local preacher and with nature are only small obstacles to his obsession. This film is based on a Paul Theroux novel.

• Nov. 29: “Grizzly Man” (rated R). Timothy Treadwell presumed that he could safely live among the grizzly bears of the Alaskan wilderness, but the outdoorsman and author (“Among Grizzlies”) met death in an unwelcome way – he was killed and devoured by one of the very animals to which he had devoted years of study.

Filmmaker Werner Herzog relies considerably on Treadwell’s own video footage, but he takes Treadwell’s story into unexpected emotional frontiers and startling landscapes of the mind.

For more information about the series, contact Kristin Bolfert at (480) 965-8927 or