top of page
  • Writer's picturePopEntertainment

The Pollinators (A Movie Review)


Featuring Bret Adee, Jeff Anderson, Alan Ard, Dave Hackenberg, Susan Kegley, Bill McKibben, Dan Barber, Christina Grozinger, Jon Lundgren, Sam Ramsey, Jim Frazier, Maryann Frazier and Glenn Card, Leigh-Kathryn Bonner, Zac Browning, Lucas Criswell and Davey Hackenberg.

Directed by Peter Nelson.

Distributed by 1091. 92 minutes. Not Rated.

Guys, out today (June 16), video on demand: The Pollinators, which is a worthy documentary to watch. Director (and beekeeper) Peter Nelson traveled to 14 states (including Pennsylvania!) over one and a half years of pollination seasons to gather footage for this film. The resulting movie is a fascinating watch.

The Pollinators pairs super-relevant science with INCREDIBLE close up, slow-motion bee footage, early morning misty farm sunrises, and Douglas J. Cuomo’s peppy original score to create a beautiful and important documentary film. Make it worth your time to learn a little something about our soil, where our food comes from, and of course the pollinators that make our fruits and vegetables possible.

While the catastrophic worldwide decline in bees could easily be told as a story of gloom and doom, The Pollinators is a film of hope. It talks about where we are at in the current bee crisis, the suspected history of where it came from, and how we can make choices to make the situation better.

Bee health directly impacts 33% of the food America eats. So, if you think this issue doesn’t matter to you, give this film a watch.

If you already know this issue matters to you, I bet you haven’t thought about the degree of coordination and management that current farming and apiary science require to make sure that hives are getting to their needed locations…sometimes with very little notice.

Imagine 40-plus tractor trailers traversing the country, carrying the right amount of hives with bees to pollinate the February/March California almond season, because the almond industry requires the use of nearly 100% of our nation’s bee supply for pollination. This is a number that clearly cannot be managed by the native bees to the almond supplying region of the country, particularly with the current day annual loss of bees.

Imagine then that these same hives must be forklifted back onto tractor trailers and moved to the next region of the country (Maine blueberries?) in order to support that region’s crops. Am I the only person that didn’t realize that managed beekeeping was a multi-million-dollar industry with farmers renting hives for their crop pollination?

The Pollinators visually illustrates the complexities of pollination management and what apiaries are doing to stay on top of the hives in spite of current day, huge hive losses. This comes to sometimes 33-50% annually, felt to be due to three major stressors: mites, pesticides, and infections.

It talks about government regulation of chemicals (and lack thereof) and the steps that farmers can take in the industry to improve their land and crops to minimize the need for chemicals (a bottom up approach to improving the industry). Most importantly, it talks about the ways that we, as consumers, can help to support the apiary and local farming industries to improve practices, including food choices to focus on seasonal vs year-round supply.

So, head to your farmers market, make a farm-fresh meal, and watch The Pollinators. Add 2018’s The Biggest Little Farm, and you have a night of inspiration!

Bonnie Paul

Copyright ©2020 All rights reserved. Posted: June 16, 2020.

155 views0 comments


bottom of page