The Operating System


“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”  ― Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
Sometime during the occupation of Zuccotti Park last year I learned about the efforts of filmmaker Velcrow Ripper, who (alongside fellow documentarian/photographer Ian MacKenzie) was on the ground taking footage of OWS — with the intention to show how this (and other contemporary movements… a shift he calls the “movement of movements”) could be seen as the ultimate love story of humanity for itself, for us of each other. They spoke of a project that Ripper describes as the movie he “has been waiting to make all [his] life,” which they soon decided to call, appropriately: OCCUPY LOVE.
Our conversations began not long after, in the planning stages of the film, before they took the show back on the road, following the story of these movements and their shared motivation abroad and across the continental US/Canada — where, in case you’ve not been paying attention, the Occupy network has continued to thrive and work, aligning with efforts against the Keystone pipeline, with First Peoples / indigenous rights movements, and locally again with Occupy Sandy (efforts which have widely been documented as providing more lasting, effective, and real relief to those affected than aid organizations that dwarf them in scale, budget, and institutional support.)
Suffice it to say, it’s been a busy (and inspiring year). I reconnected with Ripper as the film was in its final editing stages, and sat down with him upon his return to Brooklyn to discuss all things OCCUPY LOVE an incredible and inspiring exchange which will be posted in full later this week as part of our RE:CONVERSATIONS series.
As always, we are also interested in asking a filmmaker like Ripper how he feels his work is not only a documentation of change but a vehicle of it — and how members of our community can learn from and expand upon both the experience of his subjects and his own creative journey.
In our conversation, we speak at length not only about the content of the film but so too about how creative efforts such as this have not only the potential to but are already creating lasting, systemic change from the ground up — particularly in tandem with social media (which the Occupy Love team uses expertly: from the development of the FOUND LOVE global photo sharing app and web gallery, to the use of crowdfunding — a topic on which MacKenzie is a consultant and community educator)  and crowdsourcing the release through TUGG (an incredible web platform/service by which communities can organize screenings of films at local theaters). I can’t wait to share it with you.
In the meanwhile:
Please join the Exit Strata community for the theatrical release of OCCUPY LOVE in NYC, (or upcoming on the west coast!) For ticketholders on May 3rd (opening day) to any screening at Cinema Village your ticket will also get you into the official afterparty at Tammany Hall in the LES with DJ Nickodemus and Cumba Mela’s 2MELO.
But first, a little more about the film:
For the third installment of his “Fierce Love” trilogy, which began with Scared Sacred (a journey to the ground zeros of the world, asking how survivors came out not only ok but stronger) and then Fierce Light (a search for the place where the search for meaning and action have begotten global “spiritual activism”)  filmmaker Velcrow Ripper has taken a journey deep inside the revolution of the heart that is erupting around the planet, as he asks the question, “How could the crisis we are facing become a love story?”
Occupy Love explores the growing realization that the dominant system of power is failing to provide us with health, happiness or meaning.   The old paradigm that concentrates wealth, founded on the greed of the few, is causing economic and ecological collapse. The resulting crisis has become the catalyst for a profound awakening:  millions of people are deciding that enough is enough –  the time has come to create a new world, a world that works for all life.
The film connects the dots in this era of rapidly evolving social change, featuring captivating insider scenes from the Egyptian Revolution, the Indignado uprising in Spain,  Occupy Wall Street in New York, Indigenous activists at the Alberta Tar Sands, the climate justice movement, and beyond. Woven throughout the action oriented backbone of the film is a deep exploration of public love, and compelling stories of an emerging new paradigm.  It features some of the world’s key visionaries on alternative systems of economics, sustainability, and empathy, including Naomi Klein, Bill McKibben, Jeremy Rifkin, bell hooks and Charles Eisenstein.  Meet the full cast here.
Did you get your ticket yet? Here’s even MORE information. Make it happen.
We are thrilled to announce the Occupy Love  theatrical film tour, with director Velcrow Ripper + producers Nova Ami and Ian Mackenzie, Found Love interactive director Nicole Sorochan, and special guests from the film.  Tour includes New York, LA, SF, Santa Cruz,  Seattle, and more. Canada, Europe and Japan this summer!
The creative team behind this amazing project is relying on the power of social media to make this tour a success, so please share and invite your friends in each town. As mentioned above, they are also are crowd sourcing the release through TUGG – so get your tickets now to activate the screenings wherever you are, even if it’s not on the list of cities below.
May 3 – GLOBAL – Found Love App Launch
May 3 – 9th – NEW YORK – Facebook Event / Buy Tickets
** New York After-Party – May 3 – post-screening
May 7 – LOS ANGELES – Facebook Event / Buy Tickets
MAY 8 – SAN FRANCISCO – Facebook Event / Buy Tickets
** WORKSHOP MAY 9 – SAN FRANCISCO – Love in a Time of Crisis Workshop
MAY 11 – SANTA CRUZ – Rio Theatre – Facebook Event / Buy Tickets
MAY 12 – SEATTLE – Facebook Event / Buy Tickets
** WORKSHOP MAY 13  – SEATTLE Love in a Time of Crisis Workshop
MAY 21 – BELLINGHAM  – Hosted by Center for S.A.C.R.Ed Change, Occupy Bellingham, Transition Whatcom: Heart and Soul Working Group, Terra Organica, Community Food Coop / Buy Tickets
MAY 22 – ORLANDO  – Hosted by Teresa Marrero 7:30pm at Premiere Cinema 14  |Buy Tickets
View all  TUGG Screenings 
View all the screenings around the world.

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