Congratulations to film director Lenore Eklund. Her film Time As Money was truly a labor love. Now, Amazon is making it available to purchase and to rent. Here is the link:
If you have Amazon Prime, it is available for free. (However, the film’s creators put in much money as well as love and time to make it. They will get a small part of the fee if you choose to pay.)
We wrote a review of Time As Money when the film was first released in 2014. For such a wonderful film, there cannot be enough opportunities to highlight it – so here is that review again, now posted as a blog.
Small + Small = Big
In the way that an incoming tide has an irresistible force, Time As Money is a powerful film. Moment by moment, scene by scene, it creeps up on the viewer. Past the point of no return, you realize that you have been drawn into something unexpected and different. By showing Time Bankers in action and by enlisting TimeBank members to explain what TimeBanking means to them, the film defines and redefines TimeBanking. Each time with a new perspective.
The film celebrates the wealth of community. It illustrates how Time Banking revives the tradition of barn-raising, and it captures some of the creative ways in which Time Banking has been used to birth Repair Cafes, team projects, and ecosystem renewal initiatives. We get to see how individuals who do not think of themselves as leaders become founders and catalysts when they took the idea of Time Banking and put the core values into practice.
All the representations of Time Banking share this one thing: they describe actions and events that are ordinary and understandable; but for anyone not yet familiar with how Time Banking works, these things hang together in unexpected and disconcerting ways. By the end, a vision of society has materialized before us that is familiar, but also different. It’s as if all the furniture in the room has been lovingly rearranged in the service of recapturing a sense of community – a sense that collectively we yearn for, but which seems to be disappearing before our eyes like the smile of a Cheshire cat.
In short, this film is a kind of immersion experience-an immensely rich immersion experience-that takes time to reveal itself as that. We see how Time Banking bridges and celebrates diversity. We hear how Time Banking can play a special role in hard times and enable people to deal with personal setbacks. But the film also captures an emergent quality: the joy, the exuberant energy and a culture of trust, affection and sharing that knits together a new sense of community.
This is a wonderful film for a TimeBank to host, especially if the audience includes some who are familiar with TimeBanking and others who are not. In a world of instant gratification, quick fixes and a drive for efficiency, this richly layered tapestry calls out for shared reflection by audience members.
So, a suggestion: combine it with a potluck; use it as an occasion to explore together what TimeBanking means or could mean to the people in the room; consider offering hours for that reflection. And relish the prospect of all the giving and receiving that will take place. It will be a win-win for all.