Distributor:  Bullfrog Films
Length:  57 minutes
Date:  2003
Genre:  Expository
Language:  English
Grade level: 7-12, College, Adult
Color/BW:  Color
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A Lot in Common (Short Version)

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A community garden grows community as well as food, flowers and consciousness.

A Lot in Common (Short Version)

Meet the neighbors: Grandpa Roosevelt and his grandson, Joan the single mom, Ruthe the psychic, and Amy the metal sculptor. They all have 'A Lot in Common' when together they turn a vacant lot in Berkeley, CA into a blooming community garden full of lush native California vegetation, eco-friendly technology demonstrations, and outdoor artwork by local artists. They clash over political ideals, runaway pets and public art, yet in the end, they grow a community of neighbors.

Interviews with urban planning visionary Jane Jacobs, PBS reporter/author Ray Suarez, environmentalist Paul Hawken, and Urban Habitat co-founder Carl Anthony, lend context and background to the discussion of the Commons. Landscape architect/psychologist Karl Linn who envisioned and orchestrated the creation of the gardens, provides on-going commentary.

'A wonderful tribute to the visionary landscape architect Karl Linn and the energetic, creative community gardeners in Berkeley...An exciting learning resource.' Ellen Kirby, president, American Community Gardening Association

'A well-crafted, humanistic documentary that kept me thoroughly engaged!' Danny McGuire, executive producer, KQED-TV

'A convincing argument for what Linn calls 'neighborhood commons' as well as a poignant story about friendship and community-building, with all the challenges and sweetness that implies.' San Francisco Chronicle

'Stunning images, captivating story,...a work filled with grace and artistry that goes right to the heart.' Amy Blackstone, artist

'Wonderful, touching, funny, and inspirational...it speaks to the very nature of why many of us think that community gardening brings people together in the best of ways.' Beebo Turman, Berkeley Community Gardening Collaborative

'Brilliant...inspired!' Adam Honigman, Clinton Community Garden, New York City

'It's not just about a community garden in Berkeley, it's about the human community everywhere.' Terence M. O'Driscoll, Station Manager, WNYE


Best of Festival Award - Documentary, Berkeley Video and Film Festival
Vermont International Film Festival
Hazel Wolf Environmental Film Festival


Main credits

Bacigalupi, Rick (film producer)
Bacigalupi, Rick (cinematographer)
Bacigalupi, Rick (editor of moving image work)
Krache, Maia (narrator)

Other credits

Music, Ed Bogas, Mark Behm, Désirée Goyette.

Distributor credits

Rick Bacigalupi

Rick Bacigalupi

Rick Bacigalupi

Docuseek2 subjects

Urban Studies
Urban Ecosystems
Nuclear Issues
History of Architecture
Landscape Design

Distributor subjects

American Studies
Urban Studies
Urban and Regional Planning
Western US


community gardens, Berkeley, eco-friendly, public art, Jane Jacobs, Ray Suarez, Paul Hawken, Carl Anthony, the commons; "A Lot in Common (Short Version)"; Bullfrog Films

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