directed by Jessica Oreck





Sowing the grains of the future.


Alyssa and Maksim work at the Institute of Plant Genetic Resources in the center of Leningrad.  The Institute houses the world’s first seed bank, a priceless trove of living genetic diversity, which holds the potential to transform modern agriculture. The two young botanists fall in love as the world wages war around them. The enemy surrounds Leningrad, cutting them off from the rest of Russia, from electricity, from warmth and from food. Savagery transplants civility. Maksim and Alyssa defend the seed bank and its priceless collection of edible specimens from the starving masses of the city, the enemy, rats, and each other.


CAST   Maksim Blinov, Alyssa Lozovskaya


PRODUCED BY Myriapod Productions

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JESSICA ORECK makes projects large and small that instill a sense of wonder and invite viewers to question their relationship with the natural world. Jessica’s first film, Beetle Queen Conquers Tokyo, was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award in 2010 (Truer Than Fiction Award) and aired on PBS’s Independent Lens series as well as playing theatrically around the world. In 2011, her short documentary film Venus premiered at Sundance Film Festival. Her second feature, Aatsinki: The Story of Arctic Cowboys, premiered in competition at the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival and had wide theatrical distribution. Jessica’s last feature-length film, The Vanquishing of the Witch Baba Yaga, premiered at New Directors/ New Films in 2014 and opened theatrically at the Museum of Modern Art in NYC. Jessica also makes short educational content, including two series for TED, Mysteries of Vernacular and In a Moment of Vision…, as well as several shows for the soon-to-launch educational children’s network.


SOUTH BY SOUTHWEST 2019 - Official Selection