Bram Levinson

It’s happened again. Last night I sat down to watch Gasland, a documentary on the USA’s shift to natural gas as an alternative energy source and the devastatingly harmful repercussions of the method of drilling that is being practiced all over the country. I knew that I was running the risk of getting worked up, as my history with the investigative journalistic approach to documentary films has shown me that I’m very quick to get riled up when injustice is exposed…and I know that I’m not the only one.

One of my posts from earlier on in the year, The Yoga of Food, came about after I watched Food, Inc, and I was very vocal to my friends and family about how frustrated I was after I saw it…frustrated that making smart decisions about what I eat and where it comes from seems to be harder and harder to do, and how global corporations are 100% responsible for making that choice near-impossible, prioritizing the almighty dollar instead of humanity (if you’ve never seen The Corporation and you want to increase your blood pressure, I suggest renting it). Michael Moore has made a career out of speaking out against big business and the governments that support it, and while I take my hat off to him for having the guts to initiate change and put his own neck on the chopping block, he still gets dismissed as having his own agenda which often de-legitimizes his arguments.

Last night was no exception, as after I watched the doc, I went to bed slightly depressed and defeated…I innately have the knowledge that things will always turn out fine, regardless of the ups and downs that we may have to endure in the process. That knowledge, however, was once again challenged with Gasland. I walked away from it with an overwhelming disappointment in humanity, seriously doubting our ability as a race to move forwards in our own best interest…our own COLLECTIVE best interest. I felt like the scramble for monetary gain would inevitably lead to our own annihilation, the financial bottom line taking precedence over the health of our planet and the beings that populate it.

I woke up today reinvigorated, almost as if I was personally challenged and ready to rise up to meet that challenge head-on…slightly angry, but reaffirmed in my optimism that Mother Nature, in her ageless wonder, would always prevail, even if it meant that we as a species had to be thrown off the proverbial horse in the struggle to do so. My question to you all is this: how do you stay hopeful? After watching documentaries like the ones mentioned above, how do you walk away without feeling like it’s all for nothing, that we’re fighting a losing battle?

As well, feel free to comment on this blog entry with more documentary suggestions…I’m willing to continuously rise to the bait, regardless of how annoyed I may get. These films are putting seriously relevant issues under the microscope, often when “powerful” people and the companies they run would do anything to stop them.

How do you do it?

0 Responses

  1. Love documentaries that rile you up! Here are my suggestions: as you know, we are seriously addicted to Whale Wars (tv series), but the most intense documentary ever made, has to be Earthlings (the mistreatment of animals in factory farms, research, etc)…

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