A final documentary, Hope Tucker’s The Sea [is still] Around Us, is especially exquisite in its conceptual clarity and the elegance of its execution. It mourns the slow decline of the Maine resort lake Sebasticook over the course of twentieth century — a result of pollution and regulatory failures — and tells the tragedy solely through image, text, and music: In each shot, an old postcard image of the lake is held against the modern, living landscape it depicts, while lines originally written on the reverse of each card float nearby in the frame. As the letters’ messages move from innocent chafing dish parties near the turn of the century to the chlorobenzenes that are later found in the water, Tucker’s breathtaking short has the lyrical intensity of a fine poem.
The Maine Shorts Program screens on July 20, at the Railroad Square Cinema. Visit www.miff.org.
, MAINE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL