Q&A with filmmaker

How far would you go to create change? In December 2005 Daniel McGowan, a prominent New York City social justice organizer, was arrested by federal agents in a nationwide sweep of activists linked to crimes by the Earth Liberation Front (ELF)—a group the FBI has called America's “number one domestic terrorism threat.” For years, the ELF had carried out arson from Oregon to Long Island against businesses they accused of destroying the environment. Filmmaker Marshall Curry (Street Fight) creates a timely chronicle of a young man facing a long prison sentence as a terrorist for crimes committed in defense of the environment. By providing a closer look at the group’s disillusionment with the strategies of non-violent protest —in which they suffered police abuse and public indifference—the film poses difficult questions about the possibility of effecting change from within the system and examines the raised stakes post 9/11 where the “terrorist” tag is broadly applied. (Official Selection, Sundance Film Festival 2011)

US theatrical release through Oscilloscope Laboratories on June 22.  If a Tree Falls will have its national broadcast premiere on the POV (Point of View) series on PBS on September 13, 2011 at 10 pm. (Check local listings.)

Presented in partnership with New York Civil Liberties UnionP.O.V. (Point of View), and Tribeca Film Festival