Green Movies: Environmental Lessons on Home Theatre

For the environmentally conscious, it is quite as easy as falling off a log understanding the idea of anything green. It doesn’t necessary have to be described with a lush vegetation and landscape comprising beautification with flowers and trees. It however encompasses also the idea of preserving the environment and eliminating pollution and anything that depletes the environment and alters its natural functionality.

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Defining Green Movies

Many organizations  and individuals have been working hard to create awareness on environmental protection. Entertainment industry has been in the team by producing what can be considered environmental or green movies. Green movies describe the message of environmental preservation set in motion picture. Blockbuster or documentary, the message is passed on the need to be kind to the environment and preserve it in the best ways possible so that the future of the human race can be maintained. These movies in the entertainment parlance are termed climate fiction (cli-fi) movies .

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Mainstream blockbusters green movies have consistently maintained the best revenue and seem to do better in passing the message across (at least in popularity and box office gross earnings) while green documentaries maintained consistency further down the popularity line. This could mean that despite documentaries being a more effective and educative means of conveying the message of climate change, the viewership prefers the blockbusters, which on the other end conveys the message in a different tone. They usually show the catastrophe that beckons in apocalyptic themes if climate change is not tackled head-on and mitigated.

While some believe movies with catastrophic themes as a representation of the effects of climate change does not augur well for an effective message delivery, viewership is what matters most in showbiz. Demand must balance supply. Therefore, for wider public viewership and effective communication, while also ensuring high box office revenue gains, green documentaries could better be incorporated into the mainstream blockbuster narratives telling compelling and persuasive stories, with jaw dropping imagery written and directed by the best in the industry and set in motion by an ensemble of easily relatable and TV friendly characters.

A List of Few Green Movies You May Watch this Summer

Here are some green movies defining the cli-fi genre you should consider watching this summer.

Frozen (2013): Frozen is an animation green movie set in the fictional kingdom of Arendelle. The once happy and prosperous kingdom was locked in a new ice age development threatening the continued existence of the kingdom unless the people work together.

Ice Age (2002): The film series identifies the increasing ice age because of global warming and the need to adapt and survive the new development. The situation cannot be reversed but only be mitigated and the affected must find ways to continue surviving or face extinction.

An Inconvenient Truth (2006): The truth is the truth, really. Accept nothing less. Directed by David Guggenheim, this documentary film featured former vice president of the US and presidential candidate, George Al Gore take the screens using a keynote presentation he called “the slide show” to alert the public on the increasing global warming and planetary emergency. His Oscar-winning lecture was holistic on what global warming represents and the need for attitudinal change and environmental consciousness.

Happy Feet (2006): This fun-filled entertainment with so much feet tapping themed the story on the destructive activities of man, overfishing in the Antarctica, and the future of penguins. Man’s activities greatly alter the whole food chain whose consequences include extinction of some species that cannot cope.

Erin Brockovich (2000). The film blessed home theatre with the stellar performance from Julia Roberts. The titular character stands up against California’s big corporate polluters. Erin, a single mom channelled her all in giving the polluters a ride for their money in the law courts through series of class actions that would later make history in the United States.

Winged Migration (2001). This high powered documentary took over four years to film featuring all seven continents. Producer Jacques Perrin and his crew of over 400 men employed planes and helicopters fitted with in-flight cameras to capture the aerial views and motion of dozens of species of birds as the traverse across countries and continents with varied weathers and landscapes for safer havens because man’s activities and climate change rendered their birth homes inhabitable.

Fire Down Below (1997): When Steven Seagal comes to town, expect law and order – he is Justice League’s finest.  Here, Jack Taggart (Steven Seagal) takes on a professional in cutting corners, the corrupt, scary and sophisticated Orin Hanner (Kris Kristofferson); a master in distorting the environmental balance. Taggart and his boys did what he does best, exposed Orin and sent fears down the spines of other Orins.

The China Syndrome (1979). The Oscar award winning film tells the story of a principled reporter and her whistle blower cameraman who uncover some corporate malfeasance on safety hazards by the top echelon of a nuclear plant. The infamous Three Mile Island nuclear meltdown happened exactly 12 days after the film’s release, with many believing that its subject matter had some kind of foreknowledge of the activities of some unscrupulous corporate executives in big corporations.

In real world, the villains are analogous to the big corporations and polluters and only our collective environmental consciousness can ensure climate change mitigation.

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Blog written by:

IMG_0004 copyAbdulmumin Tanko has a master’s degree in Civil Engineering with an insatiable desire for research and writing. A staunch environmental enthusiast and a fervent campaigner for environmental consciousness, he works to break the silence and end the nescience, largely responsible for environmental indiscretion. . He believes that a serene and safer environment begins with YOU. Follow him on Twitter @Tikaysmalls




Abdulmumin holds a MSc in Geotechnical Engineering and is a practicing Civil Engineer. He is also the co-founder of Green Habitat, a registered NGO in Nigeria campaigning on environmental sustainability. He is quite well-rounded and with particular interests in governance, politics, environment and his trained engineering.
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