Our planet is slowly moving towards global disaster. Mankind’s devastating waste will put an end to human existence, there’s no doubt about that. The only question is when. There definitely will be a point where the air will be impossible to breathe and the water impossible to drink, and every day is another nail in the coffin. There are 6.76 billion people trying to reach for the same materialistic lifestyle, and there’s just not enough for the world to go around.
Jennifer Baichwal, director of the scary yet beautiful Manufactured Landscapes movie (based on the astonishing photos by Edward Burtynsky – check them out!), has documented the toll that “progress” is taking on the planet by visiting dumping grounds, dams, recycling yards, factories, mines and other manmade facilities that follow in the hollow trails of the industrial revolution. For the most part the documentary takes place in China, the land which strives so hard to Westernize, not realizing that this means total decline of the soul, spirit, and ultimately – life. China is the manufacturer of the world (you most probably have “Made in China”-products all over the place at home), and its’ work force is so concentrated that whole towns are dedicated to one type of product.
But there’s a steep price to be paid for runaway consumption. As Mother Earth slowly dies we tend to look away. Business as usual.
I’m like that myself, but then again, I lost hope a long time ago…
The opening shot of Manufactured Landscapes is truly surreal. The camera rolls through what seems like a never-ending Chinese factory and it blows my mind everytime I watch it. The whole movie is like that: deeply mindblowing. I’m amazed by the good shots, but repulsed by the sickness in man.
If you’ve seen the magnificent film Week End by Jean-Luc Godard you know what to expect, only this sequence is very much for real!
Unser Täglich Brot (Our Daily Bread) is another movie you definitely should watch. It’s pretty much in the same vein as Manufactured Landscapes (a documentary without the voice-over where you’re left to your own conclusions, where the photography speaks for itself), only it deals with the food industry. It sure as hell ought to awake the misanthrope in all of us.