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Surviving Progress (2011)

Not Rated | | Documentary | 23 March 2013 (Japan)
2:04 | Trailer
Theorists consider the evolution of human society and question the sustainability of the current paradigm.


Mathieu Roy, Harold Crooks (co-director)
1 nomination. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Ronald Wright Ronald Wright ... Self - Author, A Short History of Progress
Mark Levine Mark Levine ... Self - Group Leader, China Energy Group
Robert Wright Robert Wright ... Self - Author, Nonzero: The Logic of Human Destiny
Marina Silva ... Self - Former Minister of the Environment, Brazil
Kambale Musavuli Kambale Musavuli ... Self - Friends of the Congo
Vaclav Smil Vaclav Smil ... Self - Population Scientist & Author, Global Catastrophies and Trends
Colin Beavan ... Self - Engineer & Author
Michael Hudson Michael Hudson ... Self - Economic Historian & Former Wall Street Economist
Jane Goodall ... Self - Primatologist
Ming Chen Ming Chen ... Self - Self Driving Club Tour Guide
Changnian Chen Changnian Chen ... Self - Professor & Chen Ming's Father
J. Craig Venter ... Self - Biologist & CEO Synthetic Genomics
Raquel Taitson-Queiroz Raquel Taitson-Queiroz ... Self - Environmental Police Officer, IBAMA
Gary Marcus Gary Marcus ... Self - Cognitive Psychologist & Author, The Birth of the Mind
Daniel Povinelli Daniel Povinelli ... Self - Behavioral Scientist


Humanity's ascent is often measured by the speed of progress. But what if progress is actually spiraling us downwards, towards collapse? Ronald Wright, whose best-seller, A Short History Of Progress inspired SURVIVING PROGRESS, shows how past civilizations were destroyed by "progress traps" - alluring technologies and belief systems that serve immediate needs, but ransom the future. As pressure on the world's resources accelerates and financial elites bankrupt nations, can our globally-entwined civilization escape a final, catastrophic progress trap? With potent images and illuminating insights from thinkers who have probed our genes, our brains, and our social behaviour, this requiem to progress-as-usual also poses a challenge: to prove that making apes smarter isn't an evolutionary dead-end. Written by Producers

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Every time history repeats itself, the price goes up




Not Rated

User Reviews

We Are Doomed
29 September 2012 | by billcr12See all my reviews

A well made documentary, showing the basic problem of a planet of over seven billion people using the limited resources available to us, Surviving Progress is informative and uses interviews and some excellent photography to deliver its well intended message. At the start, we see monkeys in a room playing with Legos, and we are told that during an experiment, a human child, when challenged with a problem solving variation will ask why, which is seen as the major difference between us and the chimp, as we are otherwise genetically very similar. Our capacity for survival is what makes us unique. A segment dealing with the destruction of the rain forest is disheartening, as some environmental officers struggle in vain against workers just trying to make a living. Economists and scientists explain that we cannot continue to demand more and more modern conveniences without destroying the Earth. It is a simple and basic story, and it looks as if we are already past the point of no return; oh well, it was fun while it lasted.

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English | Mandarin | Portuguese | French

Release Date:

23 March 2013 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Survivre au progrès See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,161, 8 April 2012

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby SR



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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