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State of the Planet 

David Attenborough investigates the latest scientific research to discover whether or not there is a global environmental crisis, and, if so, what solutions there are to it.
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Cast overview:
David Attenborough ...  Himself - Presenter


David Attenborough investigates the latest scientific research to discover whether or not there is a global environmental crisis, and, if so, what solutions there are to it.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis









Release Date:

15 November 2000 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Látlelet a Földről See more »

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Technical Specs


(3 parts)

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


David Attenborough: The future of life on earth depends on our ability to take action. Many individuals are doing what they can, but real success can only come if there's a change in our societies and our economics and in our politics. I've been lucky in my lifetime to see some of the greatest spectacles that the natural world has to offer. Surely we have a responsibility to leave for future generations a planet that is healthy, inhabitable by all species.
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User Reviews

"State Of The Planet" (2000) Makes Wrong Basic Political/Social Assumptions, Ignores Important Questions: Is It "Junk Science?"
28 April 2013 | by DavidAllenUSASee all my reviews

"State Of The Planet" (2000) Makes Wrong Basic Political/Social Assumptions, Ignores Important Questions: Is It "Junk Science?"


Ecological and overpopulation crowding problems the world faces currently are abundantly clear and oft cited many places. What is needed is useful new information about what is to be done, or can be done, especially politically and commercially.

The importance of political and commercial changes and actions impacting current problems is mentioned in throw-away comments at the very end of this documentary with no elaboration or proposals.....yet elaboration and proposals regarding these things are precisely what is needed.

Sir David Attenborough (1926 - ) takes advantage of an interesting and timely topic, then refuses to ask obvious and basic questions of importance about "how did this happen" and "what can be done"....

Particular people, particular groups in the world caused present problems, "we" as a group (the entire population of the world) didn't all cause the problems, as this documentary states repeatedly, to it's discredit.

No action to correct "State OF The Planet" problems can take place if accurate blame is not fixed, and this is not done in this documentary, sadly.

"State Of The Planet" (2000) takes an important overall topic of great interest to widespread audiences, and ignores obvious questions (questions also obviously controversial) and provides familiar politically and socially correct views which shed little light on the subject treated by "State Of The Planet" (2000 BBC), and end up providing the viewer with a doubtful intellectual treatment of problems presented.

It comes near to being "junk science," which phenomenon has abounded in recent decades and threatens to overwhelm and drown modern science media and major science education outreach.

Right subject, but wrong questions, and wrong assumptions.

This is part of a larger trend part of Sir David Attenborough's long laundry list of science presentations over the past 35 years.

Sir David Attenborough (1926 - ) is probably the most famous popular natural science media personality in modern times, and his importance (chronicled interestingly in "A Life On Film" part of the "Attenborough In Paradise" DVD package) cannot be denied.

Sadly, what also cannot be denied is the overall decline in intellectual quality of his presentations since his earliest major solo natural history documentary credit titled "Life On Earth" (1978 BBC), which was a well done, carefully and intelligently presented account of natural history on Earth from its earliest single cell beginnings in ancient oceans to humankind "modern man" primates in current (1978) times.

"Life On Earth" (1978) was Sir David Attenborough's best science documentary, and emphasized Charles Darwin's natural selection/ adaptation theories and ideas.

This was all very controversial because Darwin's ideas conflict with current widespread gospels of social equality in which "nurture" is emphasized ("anybody can do well with good education and good material resources") and "nature" ("you are importantly what you inherited from your direct ancestors, and people with different ancestors are different, not at all the same, and can never be").

Fast forward to "The Living Planet" (1984 BBC) which was a pleasant and well photographed trip around the world which depicted various animals in varied habitats. It was a de-facto travel documentary with little intellectual content, a lot of pretty pictures and interesting local facts, but lacking in the overall intellectual conclusions part of the much better "Life On Earth" (1978 BBC) presentation.

Then came "Trials Of Life" (1990 BBC) which presented animal behavior in 12 episodes with obvious lessons and parallels for the current human community, but made no comparisons and came to no conclusions about lessons humans should learn from study of the animal kingdom and basic behavior widespread, well documented.

Other documentary science presentations followed, but "State Of THe Planet" (2000 BBC) offered the chance to look at overall questions part of what has become of the Earth in recent times, and how it affects humans who live on the earth (currently more than 7 billion, almost double the amount since "Life On Earth" 1978 was produced).

Questions of competing and mutually hostile activities engaged in by different human groups on the Earth, and impact of these activities are summarily ignored.

The problem activities and results leading to bad times in current history are dismissed, and the collective term "we" (all human beings, no differences between groups or individuals) is invoked.

"We" are guilty.

"We" caused the big problems currently in progress and getting worse.

"We" must change (as a group, in a unified way).

The fact is that some groups and some individuals caused the problems depicted on "State Of The Planet" (2000 BBC) and also problems not mentioned at all or not emphasized (e.g. the arrival of 7 billion people overpopulating the planet, up from roughly 2 billion people roughly 60 years ago.......an astonishing and dramatic and portentous change in Earth's human history).

5 billion NEW people are here who weren't here in 1950, and they all want housing, health, education, culture, happiness, power.

The big numbers are being nurtured and catered to because profits result from doing that, both political and commercial.

Political and commercial causes of current "State Of The Planet" (2000) problems are mostly ignored and soft-pedaled, and for obvious reasons.

Political and commercial interests control major media and media spokespersons, including Sir David Attenborough (1926 - ) who did not "bite the hand that fed him" by criticizing powers in the political and commercial world, and ideals pushed forward onto the world and its media by those powers.

It is important to pay attention to and ask the basic questions posed in "State Of The Planet" (2000 BBC), but it is equally important to have high intellectual and logical standards.

Anyone who has these standards will not (and cannot, sadly) take "State Of The Planet" (2000 BBC) seriously.


Email: TexAllen@Rocketmail.Com

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