Higher Education DVD + PPR: $289.00


Factory farm agriculture, changing world markets, and climate change collide with small-town values in a vibrant portrait of rural America in transition. Set in the West and told over a decade, Dryland traces Josh’s dream to stay on his 4th generation family wheat farm, while he competes in the annual Lind Combine Demolition Derby—a colorful metaphor for the grit and courage needed to farm, and to sustain endangered rural communities. In turns raucous and joyful, meditative and lyrical, Dryland is an inspirational story of innovation, resilience, and hand-hewn hope in the Internet age.

. . . a compelling story that narrates this generation’s challenges and triumphs in the rural West.”

—Dan Spencer, Ph.D., Associate Professor,
Dept. of Environmental Studies,
University of Montana, Missoula, MT

Higher Education DVD + PPR $289.00
Higher Education DVD + PPR + Streaming License $439.00
K-12 and Nonprofit Groups DVD + PPR $129.00

The Lind Combine Demolition Derby supports the town of Lind through dry years and economic uncertainty. The tiny town of 500 swells to 5,000 for one day each year and, with barn-raising fervor, funds critical local services. Paradoxically, as agricultural technology advances, allowing for more efficient production, the need for labor decreases and fewer young farmers can remain on the land. Higher costs force farms to consolidate or grow, and many family farms and the rural towns depending on them to simply disappear.

. . . provides fertile material for discussions of environmental justice and sustainability in the frameworks of family farming and land use.”

            —Matt Samson, Ph.D.,
Professor of Anthropology, Davidson College, Davidson, NC

Galvanizing optimism and strategy, Josh and Matt rebuild their combine “JAWS” each year to vie for the derby title, just as they plan for the year’s harvest. But even as Josh leads “JAWS” to victory, he’s defeated in his lifelong passion to work the fields his great-grandfather first tilled, and he is forced to leave the farm to find a job.

. . . delivers a powerful message about the importance of family farming in our culture.”

            —Lisbeth Goddik, Ph.D.,
Professor and Extension Specialist, Food Science and Technology,
Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR

A visceral, cinematic duet of hard work and harder play, Dryland meditates on the changing landscape of rural communities, filling an important niche in the conversation around what Farm Aid calls the “Good food movement.” With a worldwide groundswell of interest in food systems—from local eating to urban farmcraft—Dryland offers an authentic story about living on the land. Called “a bittersweet and beautiful new film” by Modern Farmer Magazine, Dryland ultimately champions hope, in a what Farm Aid terms “a raucous celebration of the culture of agriculture and an honest look at the reality of family farming.” 

. . . both a raucous celebration of the culture of agriculture and an honest look at the reality of family farming.”

             —Jennifer Fahy, Communications Director, Farm Aid

Run time: 62 minutes, Closed Captioned


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Sue Arbuthnot is a filmmaker with an MFA in Film from Columbia University and a BFA in Sculpture from the Pacific Northwest College of Art in Portland. Sue founded Gracenote Productions in 1991 and Hare in the Gate Productions, LLC, in 1999, and with partner Richard Wilhelm, they produce documentaries, multi-media interpretive exhibits, design, and photography. Their award-winning films have received numerous arts and humanities grants, have aired on PBS, and have screened internationally. Their feature documentary Dryland, filmed over ten years, and featuring an original score by award-winning composer Mark Orton (Nebraska) celebrated its World Premiere at the 2014 Big Sky Documentary Film Festival. Sue is the recipient of a Pacific Pioneer Fund grant and an Oregon Media Arts Fellowship. She teaches Film Production at the Northwest Film Center in Portland and is a founding member and Board Vice-President of the Portland Chapter of Women in Film.

Richard Wilhelm earned his BFA and MFA in Visual Design and Photography from the University of Oregon, and then established a design studio in Seattle, which he directed for 14 years. Richard’s photography has been exhibited in galleries and collections throughout the United States. He taught photography at UO and Elderhostel, and conducted 50 photographic workshops. Richard’s recent work includes several permanent multi-media interpretive exhibits in Portland. In addition to producing films for Hare in the Gate Productions, Richard, along with Sue and two other partners, created InfinityBox Press, LLC, publishing new and re-released fiction of his mother, renowned author Kate Wilhelm, as well as republishing the works of his late stepfather Damon Knight, celebrated both as a science fiction author and editor.