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Year: 2005
USA: Shoreline Entertainment
UK: Swipe Films
Cast: Michael Dorn, Dr Lawrence M Schoen, Dr d'Armond Speers, Rich "Captain Krankor" Yampell, Michael J Oetting, Marc Okrand, Louise Witty, Eric Andeen, Alan Anderson, Carey Anderson, Roger Cheesbro, Heather Myers, Mark Shoulson, Lionel Smith, Agnieszka Solska, Alec Speers, Tad Stauffer, Robyn Stewart, Andrew Strader, Meghan Strader, David Trimboli, Rachel Wyman, Eric Zay
Director: Alexandre O Philippe
Country: USA
USA Release Date: 17 October 2004 (Limited Release - Denver)
UK Release Date: 8 September 2006 (Limited Release - London, West End and Edinburgh)


On August 1, 2003, 33 people met at a Philadelphia hotel to celebrate and speak a language from Outer Space. The comical documentary, EARTHLINGS: UGLY BAGS OF MOSTLY WATER, captures the life, passions and quirks of the members of the Klingon Language Institute. Interviews of KLI members (Linguists, Psychologists, Star Trek fans and steadfast individualists) reveal the intellectual, fraternal, liberating and no-nonsense, direct qualities they enjoy within the constructed-from-pop-culture Klingon language. From Louise Witty, who becomes fascinated with the language from her interest in Star Trek boots (and then fabricates and sells them) to a Paintball King who shouts strategic, military movements in the Klingon tongue, EARTHLINGS examines the interplay between culture and language, communication and emotion, and the rather delicate line between reality and fiction.

Produced within a visually interesting and texture-filled, Sci-Fi style setting, Earthlings might be categorized as a Picture Show, a highly-stylized subjective documentary that emphasizes specific narrative strands and takes liberty with the tone, pacing and composition for comic effect. This is not a TREKKIES (1997) imitator, but instead an entertaining view of an intellectual (and not-so intellectual) endeavour to sort out and to explore humans and language, and the definitions of success and failure.

In 1979, Paramount Pictures hired Linguist Dr Marc Okrand to develop the Klingon language as realistic dialogue for its first feature-length STAR TREK film. He was later asked to expand the language for STAR TREK III: THE SEARCH FOR SPOCK (1984) and for episodes of STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION. He continues to add to the Klingon vocabulary today.

Why speak Klingon?

One Earthling interview subject says it best, "Why not?"
The study of any new language reveals the implications and meanings of all languages. It reveals characteristics of culture, society, history/origins, and technology. Moreover, it is a form of play.

About the Klingon Language Institute

Founded in 1992, the Klingon Language Institute continues its mission of bringing together individuals interested in the study of Klingon linguistics and culture, and providing a forum for discussion and the exchange of ideas.

Klingon may sound (intentionally) alien, but it is a complete language with its own vocabulary, grammar, and usage. Several factors explain the popularity of the warrior's tongue. While there have been other artificial languages, and other languages crafted for fictional beings, Klingon is one of the rare times when a trained linguist has been called upon to create a language for aliens. Additionally, one must consider 30 years of the Star Trek phenomenon that has permeated popular culture and spread around the globe. Though based in the USA, the Institute is actually an international endeavor, presently reaching 30 countries on all seven continents.

The place to begin studying the Klingon language is Marc Okrand's The Klingon Dictionary published by Pocket Books (ISBN 0-671-74559-X). Other sources for consideration include Conversational Klingon (ISBN 0-671-79739-5) and Power Klingon (ISBN 0-671-87975-8). Two audio cassettes (also by Marc Okrand, with narration by Michael Dorn) can assist in learning the sounds of Klingon and provide useful phrases. The main vehicle of the Klingon Language Institute is HolQeD, a quarterly journal. For more information about the Klingon Language Institute, please visit .

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