ROCK BOTTOM RISER
A film by Fern Silva
2021, 70 minutes
From the earliest voyagers who navigated by starlight, to present-day astronomers scanning the cosmos for habitable planets, explorers have long made Hawaii the hub for their searching. Today—as lava continues to flow on the island—another crisis mounts as scientists plan to build the world’s largest telescope on Mauna Kea, Hawaii’s most sacred and revered mountain.
In his dynamic feature debut, Fern Silva examines myriad encounters with an island world at sea. Drawing from subjects as seemingly disparate as the arrival of Christian missionaries and the controversial casting of Dwayne Johnson as King Kamehameha, the film weaves a vital tapestry of post-colonialism and pop culture with cinematic brio and a wry wit. Rock Bottom Riser is an essential document and an exhilarating tour-de-force, a palimpsest that traverses geology, ethnography and astronomy.
Subjects & Collections
Anthropology Asian-American Studies Cinema Studies Economics Media Studies Photography Political Science Science Physical Science Sociology American Studies American History 2022
Festivals & Awards
WINNER - Special Mention, Encounters - Berlin International Film Festival
Official Selection - Cinéma du Réel