“The Wolfpack” director Crystal Moselle brings “Our Dream of Water,” an effort to raise awareness about the global water crisis, to National Geographic today.
It’s ironic that the minute I start watching this film, it begins to rain in Los Angeles. The slight drizzle is always a welcomed sight, especially with our growing drought, however, I can’t help but feel guilty as I listen to the heartbreaking stories from three women who dedicate their lives to finding clean water for their family and community, only to be faced with daily roadblocks and hardships. For many of us, rain equals a free car wash, but for the people that face extreme droughts, rainwater is literally life-saving.
Director Crystal Moselle, the creative visionary behind “The Wolfpack,” has teamed up with Stella Artois and National Geographic to create the documentary “Our Dream of Water” in an effort to raise awareness about the global water crisis. The film profiles three women from some of the most water-scarce countries on the planet: Haiti, Kenya, and Peru. Running just under an hour long, the film will debut on National Geographic today at 6:oo PST.
Being fortunate enough to have access to drinking water that is free of dirt, animal feces, and bacteria is a gift that we often take for granted. The Flint water crisis has brought much-needed attention to this global problem, but shockingly, millions of people face even more extreme conditions. In Peru, the single reservoir the town shares holds water that looks like hot chocolate due to the mud channels it drains from. In Kenya, 17 of 45 million people don’t have access to clean water and have to rely on the dirty river for their survival. Haitians have resorted to scooping up buckets of water from gutters.
Being fortunate enough to have access to drinking water that is free of dirt, animal feces, and bacteria is a gift that we often take for granted.
At a time when we use excess water as a form of mindless entertainment, like offering a free Nintendo Wii to anyone who can drink the most water without using the restroom (which unfortunately resulted in one woman’s death due to water intoxication), “Our Dream of Water” really opens our eyes to lives outside of our own and makes one think about how we can do our part to help those in need.
Cinematically, Moselle has the same respect for these women as she did with the Angulo siblings in “The Wolfpack,” there is no sense of judgment or exploiting their shortcomings. We are purely observing their daily lives with beautiful sweeping montages of the dry, yet colorful environment and moving through the streets as fluidly as a running river.
Intentional or not, Moselle also broadens the impact of the film by reinforcing the power of women and their roles as not only family caretakers, but activists, doctors, and above all else, extremely hard workers. In all three countries, women have formed support groups that attempt to lift community spirits and take their mind off of water problems.
The strength and perseverance of these women are incredibly inspiring. Despite their circumstances and lack of basic necessities, they remain grateful for what they do have. Even the film ends on a positive note, that “No burden is too heavy with lots of hands put together.”
Since the film’s premiere, donations have already begun to help improve the situation in the three communities, allowing wells to be created and filters to be installed.
“Our Dream of Water” (commissioned by Stella Artois as a part of the “Buy A Lady A Drink” campaign, an ongoing partnership with Water.org) will debut on National Geographic at 6:00 p.m. EST/PST on March 22, on World Water Day, with an encore presentation on March 23 at 3:00 p.m. EST/PST and on demand through most large cable providers,natgeotv.com, and on the Nat Geo TV Everywhere platform (available on AppleTV, Roku, iOS phones and devices, Android phones, Xbox One & 360, Samsung Connected TVs).