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On 8 November 2018, the largest wildfire in California’s history burned through Butte County, claiming the lives of at least 85 people and forcing the evacuation of some 50,000 others. Residents of towns such as Paradise, Concow and Magalia lost everything, from their homes to the treasured possessions they had acquired over a lifetime. In this documentary, filmed during the summer of 2019, the directors Emily Thomas and Derek Knowles explore the impact of the wildfires through the lens of final-year high-school students at Paradise High and one of their teachers. In the interviews, the students grapple with their traumatic displacement, the question of ‘home’ and the steps they must take to start anew – just like the millions of climate refugees worldwide. With adulthood fast approaching, the pressure to savour the last of their already disrupted childhood looms large. But from the ashes of despair, they find resilience and hope in what lies ahead, united by a desire to secure a safer environmental future.
Dazzling timelapse shows how microbes spoil our food – and sometimes enrich it
An animator wonders: can you ever depict someone without making them a caricature?
Inside the unique London community built by residents to defy housing discrimination
Film and visual culture
With human help, AIs are generating a new aesthetics. The results are trippy
From manners to mud – two women recall coming of age in Victorian London
Gender and identity
The joys and complications of raising a baby without gender in a binary world
Like pop music, humpback whale songs spread, mutate, and fall out of fashion
The ancient world
Why did the Romans create a massive, entirely impractical map of their empire?
Human rights and justice
The staggering cruelty of Ireland’s Church-run ‘mother and baby homes’