The Chant of the Scrub Turkey
In the green hills of South East Queensland, there's a Buddhist commune called Frogs Hollow. Curled amidst lush rainforest, peaceful streams and abundant wildlife, it seems tranquil enough. But all is not bliss in this idyllic setting.
Two years ago, a guest at Frogs Hollow accidentally killed a scrub turkey. This was not only illegal but very foolish. The small and reasonably well-behaved population of turkeys retaliated. Their numbers grew, their behaviour became aggressive and their intention became clear - to make life a misery for every two-legged mammal they could find. They invaded the community's homes and trashed their much-loved and slaved-over veggie patches.
The community, inspired by their Buddhist teachings, are now responding with their own plans for karmic redemption - good thoughts, mirrors, loud music and decoy gardens. It's animals versus people, nature versus civilisation, Darwin versus Buddha - and so far, the turkeys are winning.
The half hour documentary, a mix of interviews and observational style footage, takes a light hearted look at the things that drive us crazy and over which we have no control. At Frogs Hollow, the turkeys become the obstruction to true enlightenment which prompts the ultimate question: how do we live with the day to day reality of our ideologies? This is the key dilemma of Chant of the Scrub Turkey and one with which all the characters are grappling.
Turkey expert, Ric Nattrass, becomes the voice of the turkey - anthropomorphising and speaking on their behalf. He fills in all the gaps about why a turkey does what a turkey does, which is, using Ric's term, 'because of Mum Nature'.
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