Natural Resources Reel

RL | A and Producer, Film Maker, Robert Lundahl, have 29 years experience creating Natural Resource films and environmental communications.


1. Unconquering the Last Frontier is a Feature Documentary produced by RL | A and directed by Robert Lundahl. Unconquering enjoyed a Northwest theatrical run in 2002. It later aired on Public Television and on independent cable providers in 2005 and 2006. The film is in use by Harvard, Yale, Dartmouth, the University of Washington, having been honored by film festivals around the world. It is in the collection of the Smithsonian.

The film, an original work of scholarship, chronicles the history of the Port Angeles Area from the 1870s to the present. Seattle Times correspondent Lynda Mapes referred to the film as “The History of the Pacific Northwest.” She refers to the film in her recent book, “Breaking Ground: The Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe and the Unearthing of Tse-whit-zen Village,” as seminal, and important to the new understanding that contributed to the dams removal beginning in 2011, in a 300MM project mandated by the Elwha River Ecosystems and Fisheries Restoration Act of 1992.

2. Harvest Dreams is an independent film on the transition from commodity agriculture to organic production in a small rural area in Washington State.

3. Song on the Water. 60 minute documentary. In the 1960′s Native Americans in the state of Washington were forbidden from fishing in their traditional areas, off the reservations. In what became know as the “Fish Wars,” tribal fishermen were harassed and sometimes beaten by State Police. When the Boalt Decision passed in the U.S. federal courts in 1976, the federal government guaranteed the rights to fish in “usual and accustomed grounds.” But the state often denied access. Finally in a compromise, the state agreed to allow tribes to access traditional fishing grounds if they demonstrated they could access them by traditional means, ocean going canoes.

Lundahl’s award winning ethnographic documentary, “Song on the Water” (2005), takes viewers along with 50 indigenous canoes, their crews, and communities on a modern-day voyage to a traditional potlatch. Filled with beautiful photography and inspiring Coast Salish and Nuu Chah Nulth songs and cultural expressions, the one-hour film explores what the voyage means to the “pullers,” ground crews, and elders who share the waves, the traditions, and a vision of a positive future for Coast Salish youth.

Song on the Water has aired over 300 times in 80 markets nationally via Public television stations.

Produced and Directed by Robert Lundahl. Cinematogaphy and Editing by Robert Lundahl. Location Sound, Paul Hawxhurst.

©2005 Freshwater Bay Pictures, LLC. Robert Lundahl & Associates, LLC, Robert Lundahl.

Dr. Colleen Boyd, assistant professor of anthropology at Ball State University, praises Song on the Water for providing “insight into the ironies of living tribally in the 21st century.” Says Boyd, “It is not a simple tribute to Coast Salish peoples, pretty pictures and wise words; the film makes us think about the complexities of your subjects’ lives. Having said that, it is also incredibly beautiful-the lighting, glowing faces and wonderful photography.” Song on the Water was produced by RL | A. It aired over 280 times on public television stations. The film has also been an invited participant in related film festivals. Produced in Association with The Long House Association. Washington State. Mr. Lundahl served as Executive Director of that Foundation for 3 years.

4. Pacific Tsunami Warning System is a broadcast news feature from an episode of Digital Journey: Stories from a Networked Planet. The series aired over 4000 times on U.S. public television stations, gaining a 43% market share. The series aired in Canada via TVO, and in China via CCTV. It aired on CNN Europe, and gained impressions via airport displays in London, Paris, Sydney, Beijing, and Stockholm.

5. Video News Release for Scripps Institution of Oceanography (UCSD), and Empowered Energy Solutions. Winner of the 2012 American Advertising “ADDY” Award.