Maine Public Community Films

Thursday Evenings at 10:00 pm (repeats Saturday mornings at 11:00 am)

Maine Public Community Films presents a diverse offering of independently produced films that showcase regional people, places, and topics.

If you are a producer interested in submitting a film for possible broadcast on Maine Public Community Films please download the Film Submission Packet here.

If you are interested in learning more about each film and the filmmakers click the image or the title of the film.

Are you a fan of Maine Public Community Films? We want to hear from you!

We have created the following categories for you to rank each film (1 through 10 rating with 10 being the best): Creativity, Visual Appeal, Storyline and Impact. We also recognize that you may have more to say so please take advantage of the "open comments" lines and send on any thoughts you might have. All comments will be used when evaluating the films.

Send your completed ballot to:

Community Films, Maine Public
1450 Lisbon Street
Lewiston, ME 04240

We will use the ballots to narrow down the potential winners from September 2016 to June 2017 and announce the winning film next year at the Making it in Maine Day at the Maine International Film Festival (MIFF) in July, 2017.

By the way, our friends at MIFF are so excited about this award that each month one submitted ballot will be selected to receive a VIP Pass to the Maine International Film Festival in 2017!

Ways to Connect

NextStepRun! image

Maine Public TV Air Times:
Thur., Sept. 29 at 10:00 pm
Sat., Oct. 1 at 11:00 am

Four women, including Ellie Espling of New Gloucester, ran for elective office in the mid term 2014 elections with the goal of inspiring more women to run for elective office.

A still frame from Hull 111

MPBN TV Air Times:
Thur., Sept. 29 at 10:30 pm
Sat., Oct. 1 at 11:30 am

A film about a wooden boat, a legendary boat builder and three Bowdoin College students.

Helen Nearing surveying the land

MPBN TV Air Times:
Thur., Sept. 22 at 10:00 pm
Sat., Sept. 24 at 11:00 am

This story examines the lives and deaths of Maine authors Helen Nearing and her husband, Scott, who were best known for their book about homesteading practices called "Living the Good Life." More than a biography, this hour-long documentary looks at the Nearings' commitment to self-sufficiency and voluntary simplicity and unveils the spiritual philosophy that underlay their lives and work.

Helen Nearing: Conscious Living/Conscious Dying is produced and directed by Andrea Sarris and Polly Bennel.

Watch online:

Light Spirit cover art

MPBN TV Air Time:
Sat., Sept. 17 at 11:00 am

Some lighthouses warn us away. Others usher us in. All, selflessly, serve. What was life like at the lighthouses of old? What, today? And how do these ageless towers continue to cast such magical, mystical spells?

In this video — by land, by sea and air — you will visit each of the sixty-plus lighthouses that grace the coast of Maine. Towers from which, two hundred years later, still shines a certain Light Spirit. With Jack Perkins - host of A&E's Biography.

Castine video jacket

MPBN TV Air Time:
Thur., Sept. 8 at 10:00 pm

Castine, Maine is one of the oldest communities in North America. Home to the Maine Maritime Academy, Castine has a rich seafaring tradition, but there is much more to experience. In a town with no stop lights, no chain stores, and no movie houses, there is time to think.

A still frame from The Hungry Years

MPBN TV Air Times:
Thur., Sept. 1 at 10:00 pm
Sat., Sept. 3 at 11:00 am

The Hungry Years follows a talented but homeless young musician over the course of two years as he struggles against all odds to pursue his dream of rock stardom. The film begins as we're introduced to Joel Carpenter, 21, forming his new band with members he's recently met on Craigslist. Soon he is asked to leave the relative comfort of his grandmother’s house, and so his journey into homelessness begins. His girlfriend describes this as Joel’s "nomadic lifestyle." Joel lives between his van, his "office" (the band’s rehearsal space) and crashes on various friends and relatives’ couches. Unable to hold a job very long, he is soon broke and visiting local food banks to feed himself. All through this difficult time Joel continues to write songs and performs with his band, The Effects, in bars and outdoor festivals around Maine. We follow Joel and his band’s successes and failures until tensions and dysfunction finally break the band apart. Joel is then faced with picking up the pieces and coming to terms with where his decisions have led him.

Paul Dobbins of Ocean Approved shows off the kelp grown off of Bangs Island in Casco Bay.

MPBN TV Air Time:
Sat., Aug. 20 at 11:30 am

Follow a group of environmentalist, regulators and natural resource managers as they tour aquaculture farms along Maine’s coast.

Saco River Indian Cellar DVD Jacket

MPBN TV Air Time:
Sat., Aug. 20 at 11:00 am

In 2007, the residents of Hollis, Maine were stunned to discover the historic Indian Cellar Property was being converted into a 12 lot subdivision. This inspiring documentary details the long, difficult journey taken to preserve and protect this diverse riverfront property.

Olive Pierce in a boat off the Maine coast in 1995.
David Rivera/

MPBN TV Air Times:
Sat., Aug. 13 at 11:30 am

For photographer Olive Pierce the part is never more important than the whole, not the individual more important than the community, and the photographer is never as important as the people being photographed. Her black and white photos document the spirit of community whether she finds it in high school kids, or among Maine fishing families, or with children on Iraq.

David Driskell in his studio

MPBN TV Air Time:
Sat., Aug. 13 at 11:00 am

The story of one of the most important artists and authorities on African American art. Explores the influence of mentor Romare Bearden, and the creative collaboration between Driskell and his printmaker.

The film captures Driskell ruminating about the obligation of the artist to search for the creative truth "til his or her dying day."

It also breaks new ground in its exploration of the creative collaboration between Driskell and his master printmaker, Curlee Holton.

American lobster

MPBN TV Air Times:
Thur., Aug. 4 at 10:30 pm
Sat., Aug. 6 at 11:30 am

This short documentary offers a rare insider's glimpse into the world of lobstering on Monhegan Island with lobsterman, Doug Boynton.

A still frame from Second Century Stewardship: The Science Beyond the Scenery

MPBN TV Air Times:
Thur., Aug. 4 at 10:00 pm
Sat., Aug. 6 at 11:00 am

It is the dawn of the second century for Acadia National Park and the US National Park Service. At this historic centennial moment, we explore the science beyond they stunning scenery of Acadia National Park to better understand opportunities for wise stewardship of these national treasures to benefit future generations.

The Penobscot: Ancestral River, Contested Territory image
Sunlight Media Collective

MPBN TV Air Time:
Sat., July 30 at 11:00 am

Traverse the landscape of deal-making and deal-breaking which has historically defined tribal-state relations in Maine. Spanning from the 1700s to the present-day legal battle being played out in Penobscot Nation v. Mills.

The Penobscot: Ancestral River, Contested Territory illustrates the history of the Penobscots' tenacious fight to retain their territory and their inherent, treaty-reserved sustenance fishing rights for future generations. The Penobscot people's traditional, centuries-long stewardship to ensure a healthy ecosystem for all of Maine. It tells the urgent, inspiring story of a struggle for justice and cultural survival in the face of astonishingly open abuse of state power.

Growing Local production poster

MPBN TV Air Time:
Sat., July 23 at 11:00 am

While "buying local" is on the rise, the stories in Growing Local make clear that small farms and access to locally produced food is not a sure thing.

In three short vignettes we meet the young farm couple Ben and Tayrn, who, on risky sweat-equity, have revitalized a famously fertile piece of farmland into a thriving community food hub; artisanal butcher Ben who helps us better understand how healthier, thoughtful meat production can be supported and sustained; and Richard and Adam, father and son organic dairy farmers struggling to keep their family farm going and in the family.

These poignant stories help us understand the interconnected fates of Maine's small farms, consumers and the local food movement.

Contra dancers in Peterborough, New Hampshire

MPBN TV Air Times:
Thur., July 14 at 10:30 pm
Sat., June 16 at 11:30 am

Using a wealth of rare archival films, animation, and traditional New England fiddle music, this film tells a 250-year history of an enduring form of community music and dance.

Explore the changing nature of community life through an enduring form of music and dance. The film traces the music’s arrival to New England from the British Isles in the 1750s, to its height in popularity following the American Revolution, to its near extinction and current revitalization in the twentieth century.