They say cinema is the reflection of the society. And this statement is true in its true spirit. With growing awareness among mankind towards conservation of environment a kind of movement has been initiated with such a cause gradually speeding up its pace. Having its imprints everywhere around starting from human lives, to everything made by him environment-awareness is surely working on human minds into different levels. This can be said with assurance because cinema or movies (as we prefer to call them) is seen to be influenced by this conscious awareness to a great extent. And this has ultimately resulted in the production of some of the most significant movies based on environment-related issues. These movies have been successfully delivering the message of environmental conservation to a mass enlightening every soul to work for the benefits of our Mother Nature.
The Day After Tomorrow, 2004
With striking technological features delivered with a strong-catastrophic portrayal of a “tomorrow” that mankind as a race might have to stand face-to-face. We all are aware hoe deforestation and excessive use of technological advancements is leading to rapid climatic changes. Yet we are deliberately shutting a blind eye towards it. This film exposes the consequences of such an act where we chose to ignore the apparent danger of our exploitative acts despite being fully aware of the catastrophic consequences. This film brings forth the fictional extremities of climatic conditions, a new Ice Age, that we might be facing if we don’t stop now with our heinous act of damaging the nature. One of the most popular, highest-grossing Hollywood film The Day After Tomorrow skillfully peeps through our soul to awaken it towards environment conservation.
Erin Brockovich, 2000
This biographical movie is truly one of the most influential and inspiring environment-related movies of all the time. Based on the life an ordinary lady with extraordinary courage to fight against corporate corruption of environment, Erin Brockovich is a film exposing the corporate exploitation of environment/nature. The use of chromium in the guise of “safe-chromium” leading to contamination of ground water and its eventual discovery by Erin is what forms the core of this film. One of the most influential film Erin Brockovich is a true story of fight against the corporate exploitation of nature by one of the leading companies of that time, Pacific Gas & Electric Company. It delivers the strong message that man can survive a healthy life only by embracing the environment in warm hugs rather than destroying it. If he chooses to go the latter way then there is only failure left to taste for him, as it happens with the PG & E Company.
King Kong, 2005
One of my favorite films King Kong is sure to be on the favorite list of many. Touching upon the sensitive issue of animal exploitation by the lustful homo sapiens King Kong skillfully exposes the sinful greed in the nature of Homo sapiens. Revolving around the love between a young girl played by Naomi Watts and wild Kong, a legendary giant Gorilla in the mysterious Skull Island, the film beautifully touches upon both the themes of human emotions and human greed. Both the emotions are portrayed to be intermingled with characters like Carl Denham who despite being aware of the fatal consequences that might take place goes on with his journey involving lives of other people as well. Shifting the scene to the urban stage where Kong is chained for a stage show despite his great denial, we come across the greedy nature of humans in which the power of money surpasses every moral intuitions in human. This film is for those who are truly in love with animals, and with nature thanking her for providing the mankind with such a beautiful chain of biodiversity.
The Yes Men Can Fix the World, 2009
Exposing the corporate exploitation of environment this film is all about two guys making their way to big companies exposing their exploitative nature in which they are damaging the environment. The slapstick and hilarious dialogues form the soul of the film though it was banned by the US government. But one can find this film on bittorrent. And trust me guys its a film worth watching. It skillfully deals with the hypocrisy of shark-like companies lusting only after money-making ignoring the consequences exposed through the comical dialogues of the two random young guys.
Happy Feet, 2006
A film worth watching whenever you are feeling those blues surrounding holding you back. Happy Feet is all about the joy ride of those cute chubby penguins tapping their way out through all the difficulties created for them by the humans. This film, probably one of the most popular animated film based on environmental issue emphasis on the issue of global warming as well as commercial over-fishing at Antarctica. The melting down of glaciers in Antarctica resulting into the loss of habitat for native creatures like penguins followed by the issue of commercial overfishing of the Antarctic. A must watch for everyone this light-hearted pretty entertaining movie successfully delivers the strong message that the ruthlessness of humans towards nature needs to be stopped on an urgent and immediate note.
These were just five films that I enlisted on my favorites’ list. But surely you can find many more such films. Environmental Conservation and the concern towards it is no more a mere part of documentation. It has evolved over the years and in present times dominates the themes of film industry. When such a serious issue in weaved with the creative notions of people in this field the result comes out is surely magical. Films based on such themes successfully delivers the required message in a subtle yet rigid manner. These films even though use comedy at times yet they do forget to remind the audiences of the fatal consequences that we might face due to deliberate ignorance towards environment conservation.
Other films such as Avatar, 2009 is worth mentioning which brings out the grossness of exploitation of earth’s natural resources. Such films genuinely emphasize on awakening the soul of the audience to stop harming the nature anymore, in an entertaining and effective manner.