This is a film about the transformative power of the co-operative enterprise model.
The co-operative movement was built by people who took on the responsibility for
their collective well being in the face of government neglect, economic exclusion
and cultural discrimination.
As the modern economy increasingly denies vast sectors of the population basic
amenities for decent life, this co-operative spirit is as critical as ever. However,
over the years the co-op sector has become insular and poorly understood.
A Silent Transformation sets out to explore the innovative self-help efforts of
different communities across the Province of Ontario. By addressing their needs
collectively they are helping to regain the radical vision of co-operation.
In these communities are the seeds of economic democracy, global solidarity,
and a new popular movement to transform society!
Will it grow and flourish?
A Silent Transformation was created by
Simon Brothers, Luke Mistruzzi, Anton Smolski and Mark Preston,
operating as a worker collective, based on initiative-driven participation,
consensus-based decision making and an ethos of “from each according to
his ability, to each according to his need”.
In its egalitarian approach, AST had no use for traditional hierarchies and
determinate roles common to film production: the responsibilities were shared;
directing and editing of the film was accomplished collectively.
A Silent Transformation is an autonomous and independent project made
possible by the support of a community of stakeholders that includes private
individuals, co-operative businesses, co-op associations, foundations and academic
research networks. The project set out to re-create through its production
process the types of co-operative relationships that the
film was to capture on screen.
The primary task of A Silent Transformation was to explore the co-operative enterprise
model and its transformative potential. But its deeper significance is in its attempt
to sketch out, through process and narrative, the contours of a possible transition
away from Capitalism to a system of economic democracy.
Feature: 70 mins
Educational Cut: 55 mins
London Skateboard Co-operative
Native Inter-Tribal Housing Co-operative
The Root Cellar / On The Move Organics
Planet Bean Worker Co-operative
Li Maya Coffee Farmers’ Union
Café Femenino Co-operative
Meridian Credit Union
Aron Theater Co-operative Inc.
Dufferin Grove Housing Co-operative
Parkdale Neighbourhood Land Trust
Family Pastimes Cooperative Games
Gay Lea Foods Co-operative Ltd.
West End Food Co-op