What if confronting the climate crisis is the best chance we'll ever get to build a better world? Filmed over 211 shoot days in nine countries and five continents over four years, This Changes Everything is an epic attempt to re-imagine the vast challenge of climate change. The film presents seven portraits of communities on the front lines, from Montana's Powder River Basin to the Alberta Tar Sands, from the coast of South India to Beijing and beyond. Interwoven with these stories of struggle is Naomi Klein's narration, connecting the carbon in the air with the economic system that put it there. Throughout the film, Klein builds to her most controversial and exciting idea: that we can seize the existential crisis of climate change to transform our failed economic system into something radically better. Written by
Few doubt the urgency of the environmental crisis facing the world today and you do get some sense of this from this documentary, but that's all that can really be said for it I think. As a film, it just is not very special at all, it is not something that stands out in any way whatsoever. It is often rather repetitive and takes quite a while to properly get to the point of the film, in this respect the book is certainly much better than the film. Also in terms of the solutions Klein proposes, they completely contradict how she positions herself politically. She makes herself out to be radical and anti-capitalist but she ultimately is just a social democrat and that really hurts this film. The film tries to impress upon you the urgency of the crisis and tries to illustrate to some degree how it is a result of the everyday functioning of capitalism but the social democratic solutions Klein proposes are disappointing politically and so also make the film disappointing. Worse still, I had almost forgotten that I even watched this film 24 hours later. Saying that for a film which has as its subject the environmental crisis we've created that could potentially threaten our existence as a species, is the worst thing you could really say.
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