Person taking pictures of wildfire

Prescott Film Festival’s “Elemental,” Sept. 30, suggests a new approach

Here in the West, Fire Season grows longer, busier, and more intense each year. Sustained drought and climate change have us all watching the horizon at the slightest wisp of smoke. But a new documentary suggests a better future with fire, by combining an old perspective with a new approach. The Prescott Film Festival presents Elemental: Reimagining Our Relationship with Wildfire at 4 p.m. Friday, Sept. 30, at the Yavapai College Performing Arts Center (YCPAC).

“[Elemental is a] visually stunning film that presents some of the best thinking on wildfire,” Senator Jeff Golden said in a news release. “If you live in fire country, this film could help you keep your family safe”

Elemental is essential viewing for anyone living on or near forested land. Drawing upon more than 20 years of forest studies and four years of filming in the thick of the West’s most devastating wildfires, Elemental pulls viewers through the harrowing fire corridors of Paradise, Calif., then up to the spotting towers of the Oregon forest. The film follows fire lines, slurry drops, Native American ceremonies and state-of-the-art structural labs in search of the most effective wildfire solutions.

What Elemental offers is a new approach that supports the work of modern firefighters, while advocating new building designs and technologies, and embracing an ancient perspective – older than the nation itself – that embraces fire, as a naturally occurring agent of our ecosystem, and seeks to direct rather than extinguish it.

“Elemental beautifully presents the complexity of the wildfire challenges we face and crystalizes our choices going forward – the film is a must see for all Americans living in fire prone landscapes,” Jim Furnish, former deputy chief of the United States Forest Service, said in the release.

Tickets to this film are $14 for general admission, with a 50% discount for students.

Elemental is one of more than 25 films screening at the Prescott Film Festival, Sept. 27 – Oct. 2, at YC’s Prescott Campus. The PFF offers a variety of ticket packages – from a $282 Platinum Pass, with reserve seating at films and access to the VIP Director’s Loft – to an All-Film Pass ($177) and a Ten-Ticket Discount Pass at $100. Tickets are available online or at the YCPAC Ticket Office, open Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.; and Thursdays and Fridays, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Film trailers and a full festival schedule are also available on the Prescott Film Festival website, For more information on the Prescott Film Festival, call (928) 776.2000, or visit

Information provided by Yavapai College.

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