You can pre-order the Age of Stupid for delivery in May or request permission to show the film in your area (the Stupid Team innovatively held onto the rights for the film). Also, join the Not Stupid campaign here
Well, my plan to watch the new climate change film online last night, the Age of Stupid didn’t go to plan as my internet down yesterday, but it turned out better than I thought. We decided to travel to tiny Tinahely in Co Wicklow, one of only 4 places in Ireland that had decided to host the film and live satellite transmission of the biggest simultaneous film premiere event event in London’s Leicester Square (according to the Guiness Book of Roecords no less).
The film was good; great in parts, and absolutely astounding in how ambitious the whole project was – I wasn’t surprised that the Director Franny Armstrong said she might have over 1000 people to thank. As I expected the film built upon Al Gore’s movie An Inconvient Truth, previous other peak oil and online films such at the Story of Stuff (see an earlier post), perhaps my only criticism was it tried to cover so much. Yet even the animations at the end of the proposed global carbon scheme were great in quickly explaining what this means for all countries and why the UN Copenhagen meeting this December is so important – I wish I knew how to animate.
It’s a very difficult proposition to try to make a film which is trying trying to engage the entire audience of the planet in what is now a media saturated world and on a topic in which any way you look at it will come across as preachy. However the decision to incorporate the real life stories of half a dozen representative people from around the world; to reveal how the ‘supposed story of progress’ were affecting them were compelling- young, old, from rich or poor nations, their various views brought to light the growing questioning and voices that we need to hear – you’ve heard me write before that it is only stories that will really move us and I think this was the main strength of the movie. The Archivist character from his year of 2055 looking back at clips from 2008 was also a unique filmic device to show in one scene the global effects of climate change that are already unfolding around us. It is often so easy to ignore the rolling news stories of disasters on TV as a series of seemingly unrelated and fragmented events.
However, part of what made the trip to Tinahely worthwhile was seeing the after film event live from London. The main actor, Pete Postlewhaite signed a pledge that he will return his OBE if things didn’t change in regards to climate change policies the UK – not surprisinly this has got attention in the UK already. This and the short and intense questioning of UK Minister of Energy lack of real policy by the young film’s director, Franny Armstrong were a bit of a bonus. But the real moving part was a live satellite link to a broadcast from the Maldives new president, Mohamed Nasheed. Representing one of the poorest island nations near India, already seriously threatened by rising sea levels, he announced last night that the Maldives were signalling, perhaps daring the world’s richest nations to follow suit, that they are going completely carbon neutral. He admitted it wasn’t going to be easy or cheap -apparently his governemnt approached climate change experts to develop a package of measures for renewable energy even when the climate change experts said the country could have just easily have ‘given up’ (details here in the Guardian again). It was really something to see a very small nation lead the way… all in Leicester sqaure stood after Mohammed finished speaking and I think everyone watching must have asked, ‘why isn’t my country doing something like that?’ I like Mohamed’s quote in the Guardian too,”Climate change is a global emergency. The world is in danger of going into cardiac arrest, yet we behave as if we’ve caught a common cold. Today, the Maldives has announced plans to become the world’s most eco-friendly country. I can only hope other nations follow suit.” Ah, the power of film and satellite… the news was all over the BBC this morning and I think Barack might have just been upstaged by this former political prisoner turned president.
See Mohamed’s message to the world here
And just in case you think I’ve forgotten about our forest, I have news. We have just sold our first trailer load of wood so we are well on the way to showing that our small forest is fulfilling ‘the forest that pays, will stay!’ Will post pictures soon
PS after my long previous post on NZ finished late at night, I’ve gone back and added some links for any of you interested -I’ve put links about NZ forest emissions trading scheme etc. And finally as it relates to this current post, I found this short film on youtube explaining ‘cap and share’ – the proposed carbon emmissions schemes, forms of which governments around the world are looking at. Who says you need expensive props and a long film to explain something… watch Brendan here
Finally, for something completely different and Green for St Patrick’s day, here’s some music to enjoy! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=884-ElRJX7I&feature=channel
Happy St Patrick’s Day everyone!