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April 25, 2019

The Hamptons Doc Fest is celebrating spring with documentaries about farming, jazz, and journalists, each of which will be followed by a discussion. The Spring Docs series will kick off with two screenings on Sunday at Bay Street Theater in Sag Harbor.

“The Biggest Little Farm” is the story of John and Molly Chester’s response to being evicted from their small Los Angeles apartment because of the barking of their dog. Their solution: the purchase of 200 acres of barren land located 40 miles north of Los Angeles. 

The film, shot and directed by Mr. Chester, chronicles eight years of hard work and abundant idealism as the couple attempts to create a biodiverse utopia that produces nutrient-dense foods while providing a home for pigs, goats, sheep, chickens, ducks, guinea hens, horses, highland cattle, and one brown Swiss dairy cow.

The 1 p.m. screening will be followed by a talk with Scott Chaskey, a poet and farmer from Quail Hill Farm in Amagansett, and Geoffrey Drummond, executive director of the Stony Brook Southampton Food Lab. Tickets are $15.

Stanley Nelson’s new film “Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool,” which will be shown Sunday at 4 p.m., uses archival photos and home movies shot by Davis and his colleagues, his manuscripts, and his original paintings to explore the man behind the music.

Studio outtakes and interviews with such notable musicians as Jimmy Cobb, Herbie Hancock, Carlos Santana, and Flea of the Red Hot Chili Peppers enhance the archival materials, many of which have never before been seen. Ed German, host of “The Urban Jazz Experience” on WPPB 88.3 FM, will discuss the film after the screening. Tickets are $15. 

The series will conclude on May 5 at 5 p.m. at the Southampton Arts Center with “Breslin and Hamill: Deadline Artists,” Steve McCarthy’s documentary about the intersecting lives and five-decade careers of two of New York City’s most iconic journalists, Jimmy Breslin and Pete Hamill.

The film draws from rare archival footage, family archives, and interviews with both columnists as well as major figures on the New York and national scene. It also follows them to the South Fork, where as renters they found the peace and solitude to write their novels.

The film will be followed by a conversation among Patrick Breslin, Jimmy’s son, Brendan O’Reilly, a journalist and board member of the Press Club of Long Island, and Mr. McCarthy. Tickets are $10, $7 for SAC members..

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