What exactly is a “good wolf”? That depends on who you ask. A century ago, many Americans would have echoed a common government bounty slogan, “A good wolf is a dead wolf.” But times have changed. Now, if you are a wildlife activist, a good wolf is probably a wild one, free to live its life unhindered by human interference. For a hunter or fur trapper in rural Alaska, the answer might have more to do with providing sustenance and livelihood for you and your family. To a scientist, good wolves might be the ones that provide useful data. If you are a visitor to Denali National Park, a good wolf might be the one that crosses the road in front of your tour bus for a photo opportunity.
But this film is about much more than wolves. It’s about the complexities and difficulties of balancing competing human interests on public lands. It explores opposing ideas about wild predators’ place among humans, and what (if any) responsibility we might have to manage them within natural ecosystems. And it illuminates fundamental differences in how people determine the value of wildlife, wilderness, and National Parks.
A Good Wolf explores the ongoing conflict over wildlife management in the Stampede Corridor adjacent to Denali National Park, as seen through three primary viewpoints: wildlife advocates, local hunters/trappers, and Denali National Park biologists. We follow them over the course of three years, as they navigate this volatile controversy at home and at the state regulatory board. Along the way, we meet Wolf 1202 — an extraordinarily old matriarch, now injured and alone — as she attempts to survive the harsh Alaskan winter.
Documentary filmmaking is expensive and time-consuming work. We’re grateful for the continuing support of many community members — without you, we wouldn’t have been able to make this film a reality. Now you can help us get this film out into the world. Donations will help to pay for film festival entry fees, free and low-cost screening events across Alaska and beyond, as well as travel expenses for film representatives.
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