It's Fantastic Fungi Day!
March 26, 2020 5:52 AM   Subscribe

Fantastic Fungi: The Magic Beneath Us, a new film about the beauty and possibilities of mushrooms, will be released online today instead of in theaters. Visually gorgeous time-lapse cinematography, plus interviews with Paul Stamets, Michael Pollan, and Eugenia Bone regarding mushrooms' medicinal, recreational, and many other uses. Here's the trailer! 3 live Q&A sessions are offered today as well, featuring the filmmakers and mycology experts.
posted by apparently (19 comments total) 28 users marked this as a favorite
 
I saw the film. It was over the top in places, but it was a wonderful movie for the most part. The time lapse movies of fungi alone make seeing it worthwhile. Gorgeous!
posted by haiku warrior at 6:37 AM on March 26 [5 favorites]


Ooh, thanks for posting, I'm excited!
posted by catcafe at 6:43 AM on March 26 [1 favorite]


Narrated by Brie Larson? I'm sure she does a fine job, but having a Marvel superhero star do this seems like an odd choice. I very well may watch this! From the trailer, "paradigm change" and "heal the planet" comes off as a bit Woo to me. I guess they gotta have some of that in there to put butts in seats, though. Thanks for bringing it to my attention.
posted by SoberHighland at 6:55 AM on March 26


I saw it in the theater, I think in January. Really good.
posted by MtDewd at 7:09 AM on March 26 [1 favorite]


There's also a good 2008 documentary on the same subject by Ron Mann: Know Your Mushrooms
posted by fairmettle at 7:18 AM on March 26


Next week is plants in (suddenly online!) intro biology, and the week after is fungi. This will be a great option to share with students who find our Bb Collaborate video sessions a bit dry. Thanks!
posted by hydropsyche at 8:18 AM on March 26


Narrated by Brie Larson? I'm sure she does a fine job, but having a Marvel superhero star do this seems like an odd choice.

Why? One Oscar winning celebrity seems as good as another. Is there something in particular about Larson you object to? Would you say the same thing about, say, Samuel L. Jackson?
posted by zamboni at 9:01 AM on March 26 [8 favorites]


Brie Larson has done one or two other things besides Marvel movies -- including winning an oscar for best actress -- so it's kinda odd to be dismissive of her like that.
posted by capnsue at 9:04 AM on March 26 [11 favorites]


(also this movie looks dope and i can't wait to watch it! thanks so much for posting!)
posted by capnsue at 9:06 AM on March 26


A documentary about fungus narrated by Samuel L. Jackson?

Yeah, that would be odd for me also. It's the "Hollywood Blockbuster Movie Star" as narrator part that's weird for me, nothing about Larson or Jackson in particular.
posted by SoberHighland at 9:09 AM on March 26


Oscars notwithstanding, Brie Larson is the fun girl from Community. I didn't even know she was in a Marvel movie.

I agree, that was a weird line to draw.
posted by humboldt32 at 9:09 AM on March 26


Yes, let's reserve our purity tests for true moral issues please!

Superhero movies are a sub-par, barely art form of cinema, but just because an actor "sells out" to maximise their income, does not mean they are any less talented.
posted by goinWhereTheClimateSuitsMyClothes at 9:11 AM on March 26


Running it another window right now, about halfway through. So far a bit woo and a short interlude about psychedelic use. Much more focused on global mycelium networks and other applications, including, presciently, Stamet's research on fungal solutions to viral pandemic.
posted by apparently at 9:57 AM on March 26 [3 favorites]


I also saw Fantastic Fungi in January. And, I just watched Star Trek discovery (2 full seasons!). It only took 1 season to realize one of the characters in STD (hmm) is Dr. Paul Stamets. The link between the two is highly entertaining. The writers for Star Trek clearly know their mushrooms.
posted by Carmody'sPrize at 10:33 AM on March 26 [1 favorite]


I saw this in a theatre with a bunch of folks! Most of my (relatively straightedge) friends thought it was wacky and somewhat cringeworthy, especially its reference to the stoned ape theory, expansive claims about medicinal mushrooms, inclusion of Andrew Weil, whose relationship with science is fraught, and mid-film pivot to psychedelics.

My recommendation: Paul Stamets seems really cool, watch the parts that he's in.
posted by tmcw at 11:02 AM on March 26 [5 favorites]


Just the other day I saw a very fantastic fungus indeed.
posted by deadbilly at 2:28 PM on March 26 [3 favorites]


Brie Larson is the fun girl from Community
Shouldn't they have used a fun gi?

It was interesting to watch Michael Pollan in this after reading his book.
posted by MtDewd at 3:10 PM on March 26 [1 favorite]


I dragged friends to see Microcosmos years ago, and it far surpassed nature shows on the TV. Everyone’s favorite scene was when the snails, 5 feet tall on the big screen, had sex to opera. So, in January, I naturally bought tickets to see the fungi film *tonight* at the Showcase Cinema de Lux in Revere, Massachusetts. It would have been playing at this very moment. But where am I right now? Inside my house. It is day 15 of sheltering in place. Send truffles.
posted by pickles_have_souls at 4:22 PM on March 26


Yes! I was super-bummed they cancelled the Environmental Film Fest, and this was one I was planning to see.
posted by aspersioncast at 6:59 PM on March 29


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