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School Bd/College/University DVD: $250
K-12 Single School DVD: $95
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Grade Level: SrH-Adult
Producer: Kathleen Mullen
Closed Captioned: Yes
Running Time: 43 mins
Country of Origin: Canada
Study Guide: No

Copyright Date: 2010
Available in French: No

Breathtaking produced and directed by Kathleen Mullen, Toronto filmmaker and programmer, takes on the asbestos industry through a moving and personal investigation into her father’s death from an asbestos-related disease and the current present-day use of asbestos in Canada and internationally.
Valued since the beginning of time and commercially mined since the Industrial Revolution, asbestos was coined the 'magic mineral' for its extraordinary capacity to protect against fire, and was used in everything from brake pads to oven mitts. Discovered to be carcinogenic, the use of asbestos was banned in many countries and the use of it limited in others. Canada, along with Russia and several other countries, still mines asbestos and exports it for use in developing nations.
With moving clips of her dying father’s legal testimony, family photos and Super 8 home movies as a narrative springboard, Mullen takes the audience on an investigative journey from her family’s home in British Columbia to Quebec, India and Detroit, painting a global, yet still personal picture of the many lives affected by the continued use of asbestos.
“As I began Breathtaking, everyone to whom I mentioned I was making the film responded with a personal story of their own,” Mullen says. “I soon realized that this story was a lot bigger than just my own family’s grief.”

"Planet in Focus director Kathleen Mullen's new film Breathtaking may not blow up the conventional documentary format, but it should blow Canadians' minds." -
Susan G. Cole, NOW Magazine

"Filmmaker Mullen’s skill as a storyteller is once again confirmed. In this instance she deftly balances third-person dispassion with first-person experience that speaks to the heart of anyone who has witnessed a bedside passing." -
James Wegg

Awards: Winner, Best of Festival at CLIFF (Canadian Labour International Film Festival), 2011

Screened at the 29th Festival international du film d'environnement - February 9 and 10, 2012, Paris, France
Green Screen Enviromental Film Festival & Salon, October 28-31, 2010
Toronto Premiere at the Royal Ontario Museum, February 24, 2011, co-presented by Occupational Health Clinics for Ontario Workers (OHCOW) and Planet in Focus

Links: www.kathleenmullen.com/breathtaking/

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