From Fryeburg, Maine, to the Eastern Garbage Patch floating in the North Pacific, the bottled-water industry continues to poison the well of sustainable progress while reaping huge profits and threatening public and environmental health. Heavy on emotion, epiphany, and statistics, Tapped is a film that every sport-top-sucker should see. 8 p.m. Friday, March 26, only. The screening is preceded by a 5 p.m. bottle exchange and an introduction by Bioneers’ Tim Foresman (bring your empties!). Q & A with filmmakers Stephanie Soechtig and producer Sarah Olson follows the screening. Not rated. 76 minutes. CCA
Cinematheque, Santa Fe. (Rob DeWalt)
Tapped, bottled-water exposé, not rated, CCA Cinematheque, 3 chiles Corporate greed. Pollution. Obesity. Diabetes. Liver disease. Breast and ovarian cancers. Low sperm count, birth defects, and other “adverse reproductive outcomes.” Ahh, the long-term rewards of convenient, name-brand H2O — that cool, refreshing drink.
In the 2009 documentary Tapped, co-directors Stephanie Soechtig and Jason Lindsey mine the murky depths of water privatization and the effects of the bottled-water industry on human health, local economies, and the environment. Crafted in a slick-yet-informative style reminiscent of other 21st-century documentaries about the relationship between sustenance and corporate goons ( Food, Inc.; Super Size Me; Food Matters; The Future of Food), Tapped is heavy on emotion, epiphany, statistics, and sticking it to the man — but it’s a little light in the solutions department.
From Fryeburg, Maine to Hawaii, we learn, or relearn, that the world’s most precious natural resource is under attack. The battlefield isn’t a place but rather an economic construct that puts profit over the preservation of the environment and its inhabitants at every turn. The film’s main targets — Nestlé, Coca-Cola, and Pepsi — peddle water in a market that operates (mostly) outside the control of regulatory agencies overseeing the health and safety of the nation’s natural resources and food supply.
Examples of corporate influence over water regulation run rampant in the film. For instance: some years ago in the farming and small-business community of Fryeburg, residents were initially unaware that Nestlé — the largest multinational food producer in the world — was siphoning water from the area for its Poland Spring-brand bottled water (the third-bestselling brand in the United States in 2009). Land parcels rich in water deposits were purchased and pumped (between 500 million and one billion