Health Care Movie Leads Film Festival

Tonight, March 16, at 6 p.m. the Martha’s Vineyard Film Festival gets under way with an opening reception. Try out the comfy couches, sample food prepared by Chris Fischer of Beetlebung Farm and get ready for a weekend of the year’s best documentary and feature films, many of which cannot be seen anywhere else.

The first movie screens at 7 p.m. tonight. Called Escape Fire it is a documentary about America’s healthcare system, in particular how entrenched the status quo is in maintaining a medical industry focused on quick fixes rather than prevention, and profits over patient care. The movie reveals, through personal stories and testimony of leaders battling to transform the healthcare system, a movement to introduce innovative, low-cost methods of prevention and healing.

One of the special extras the film festival is known for is the question and answer sessions following each film. Both the director of Escape Fire, Matt Heineman, and one of the film’s subjects, Dr. Don Berwick, will be on hand to discuss the movie with the audience. Mr. Heineman is a lifelong summer visitor to Chilmark who showed his first short film on hurricane Katrina at the summer film festival in 2006. Mr. Berwick, the principal subject in the movie, also spends his summers in Chilmark and is an internationally known healthcare leader and most recently the head of the U.S. Medicare/Medicaid program.

To learn more about Escape Fire, visit

For a full list of movies, showtimes, and descriptions visit