“The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make US manufacturing non-competitive”. When President Donald Trump called global warming a ‘hoax’ it created a huge furor. It remains a very misunderstood, used and abused concept.
The textbook definition of global warming is that it is the increase of earth’s average surface temperature due to effects of harmful gases. While the capitalist lobby brushes it off as a myth, environmentalists make repeated arguments to prove it otherwise.
The film, Before the Flood, by Fisher Stevens, written by Mark Monroe brings in a fresh perspective to the complex issue. Leonardo Dicaprio travels the globe as a stand-in for those clueless about climate change making it more relatable and simple to understand for everyone.
As a “U.N. Messenger of Peace”, 2014, he uses his access and position to ask world leaders and other experts important questions so as to get copious first-hand information on the causes. The revelation further reverberates the alarm for us to act fast now!
The film draws an analogy with Hieronymus Bosch’s triptych painting Garden of Earthly Delights – a frame for humanity’s reckless overconsumption of Earth’s resources. It shows how developing communities like India are grappling with pollution even though their population doesn’t entirely have access to power. If and when they make coal-produced electricity widely available, the climate change problem will only worsen.
The world looks up to the US to set an example since monetary standing is still a dominating factor. The domino effect between national security, immigration, food, poverty and occupation all comes together in creating and magnifying global warming. The film also bravely exposes the games politicians and corporate giants are playing over the years to realise their vested interests at the cost of the environment.
Before the Flood isn’t just about showing how terrible everything is it also gives hope by highlighting simple changes that can make a difference to our planet like changing one’s diet, using energy-efficient bulbs and reducing over use and wastage of power. It also shows how alternative power resources like wind and solar energy is both user-friendly and eco-friendly.
At heart, it is a film made for mass consumption, an effort to inform Climate change is real and scary! As Professor Brian Cox, perfectly puts it, “The biggest threat to civilisation is human stupidity.” We need to step up and love our planet back. Trump and other world leaders, are you listening?