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Fantastic Fungi Opening Screening w/ Psychedelic Panel

October 25, 2019 @ 7:40 pm - 10:00 pm


Opening night screening of the documentary Fantastic Fungi, followed by a panel with the director and leaders of local psychedelic organizations.


Fantastic Fungi is an important scientific exploration and visual journey through the exotic, little-known realm of fungi, directed by Louie Schwartzberg, an award-winning master of nature imagery, special-effects cinematography and storytelling that is both informative and inspiring.

We begin with our cameras exploring a vast and startling realm. We discover fungi’s enormity; the largest organism on the planet is a 2,200+ acre mycelium fungal mat more than two thousand years old! We experience their beauty; our cameras capture jewel-like mushrooms in countless shapes and in brilliant colors, from pink and yellow to turquoise. And, ultimately, we realize fungi’s potential; the film takes us on a journey that reveals mycelium as the key to the regeneration of our living planet.

Mesmerizing time-lapse imagery reveals their remarkable toughness, as mushrooms power up through dead wood and stone-hard asphalt. As we watch fungi turn solid rock into soil, we grasp a key mechanism of life on Earth: fungi are not just decomposers, but composers continually producing the ingredients of new life, sustaining our ecosystem.

But these small, mighty miracles don’t stop there. The complex chemistry of mycelium produces antibiotics powerful enough to prevent many diseases and to stop pandemics, even an E.coli or smallpox attack by terrorists. Legendary researcher Paul Stamets explains, “Our strongest existing antibiotics come from fungi. They fight off the same microbes we do with defenses we can use.”

Paul goes on to explain that expanding fungi-generated soils around the world could absorb vast amounts of carbon dioxide and help control climate change. These organisms can be fantastic allies in our efforts to protect ourselves and to rejuvenate our entire ecosphere.

First, we uncover the research that shows mycelium as a viable alternative to western pharmacology, including treatment for breast cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, and PTSD. Second, we reveal studies that point to mycelium as a solution to our gravest environmental challenges, such as toxic oil spills and colony collapse disorder. Finally, we marvel at mycelium’s proven benefit on shifting consciousness and aiding in deep personal transformation. The research, discoveries, and anecdotal evidence we’ve gathered is astounding, particularly when shared through Louie’s visual storytelling.



October 25, 2019
7:40 pm - 10:00 pm
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Monica Film Center
1332 2nd Street
Santa Monica, CA 90401
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Fantastic Fungi