kitfarrellDirector’s Statement: In my short life I’ve had the fortune of visiting Kauai many times. Through my network of family friends and acquaintances, I began to see this Hawaiian island as more than an idyllic vacation spot. At some point, it occurred to me that this “paradise” is a microcosm, albeit a surprising one, of issues that are going on all over the world.

Initially, what piqued my interest more than anything was the surprising acreage of GMO crops covering an island that used to be a major sugar cane producer. GMO labeling is a hot topic right now, and I felt compelled to delve into how this big business is affecting the local island community as well as the country at large. This investigation led me in a number of surprising directions, where I was exposed to other instances of research and development conducted on the island, from highly secretive U.S. military missile defense, to locally funded independent genetic experimentation.

I wanted to create a short piece that was a montage of this seemingly disparate, but truly connected kaleidoscope of research and experimentation. I wanted to explore the current ethical and financial realities of scientific innovation and how they affect each of us personally regarding the food we eat, our health, and our general well-being.

I hope to get viewers thinking about corporate or government ownership of research and product development (in food, medicine, military, etc.) and whether or not the resulting lack of transparency poses potential hazards to people and the environment. As citizens of the United States of America, are we not guaranteed a certain degree of self-determination, the ability to choose what we do to or put in our bodies? On the one hand, we are literally being force-fed industrially created food with unknown long-term effects on our health and the environment. On the other hand, some of us are willing to be human guinea pigs to help find cures for medical conditions or dental conditions, also with unknown long term effects on our health and the environment.

In my mind, it all boils down to the need for transparency, ethical responsibility, and the obligation to protect the planet and everyone on it. This is what I hope to get people thinking about in my debut film, Pandora’s Hope.

Director’s Bio:

Kit Farrell is a New York City based journalist and filmmaker. She attended San Francisco State University on a CSU Presidential Scholarship and graduated cum laude with a degree in Broadcast and Electronic Communication Arts (BECA). Kit has worked with White Elephant Productions in New York City to introduce educational films on stress management, eating disorders, and body image to at-risk students across the city. Her debut film, Pandora’s Hope, exposes the hidden side of paradise on Hawaii’s island of Kauai. The short film delves into to complex worlds of agrochemical biotech, GMOs, missile defense, stem cell and genetic research while posing the question: when science and nature collide, what will the future bring?

Movie Credits:

Director, Producer
Kit Farrell

Director of Photography
Larry LaSota

Larry LaSota
Wayne Zebzda

Michael Carter
Elaine LaSota

Camera Boat Captain
Dino D’Annibale

Animal Wranglers
Dennis Duarte
Richard Ruiz

Additional Footage
LookLook TV
Profile Productions

Featuring (in alphabetical order)

Dustin Barca
Richard D. Beach
Jon Bernard
Michaela Boudreaux
David T. Camp
Jean S. Camp
Manulele Clarke
Ed Coll
James Croft, PhD.
Warren L. Dastrup
Jeri DiPietro
Harvest T. Edmonds
Jim Edmonds
Joe Howard
Alan J. Ing, DDS
Gordon Labedz, MD
Paul Massey
Richard Ruiz
Gerald J. Smith
Wil Welsh
Donald H. Wilson, Esq


Written by Jeff Rasmussen
Performed by Jeff Rasmussen

“Young Scientist”
Written by Jeff Rasmussen
Performed by Jeff Rasmussen

Written by Richard Beach
Performed by Richard Beach

“Midnight Tears”
Written by Dot Beach
Performed by Dot Beach

“Reporter’s Theme”
Written by Jeff Rasmussen
Performed by Jeff Rasmussen

“Mack the Knife”
Written by Bertolt Brecht & Kurt Weill
Performed by: Richard Beach, Warren Dastrup, William Dick, David Kahaunaele, Jr.

“E Ho Mai”
Written by Auntie Edith Kanak’ole
Performed by Manulele Clark