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Review: DiCaprio’s ‘Before The Flood’ Visually Depicts Climate Change’s Harsh Effects

Review: DiCaprio’s ‘Before The Flood’ Visually Depicts Climate Change’s Harsh Effects

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Leonardo DiCaprio’s “Before The Flood” finds strength in visuals with a cumulative analysis.

We’ve seen documentaries centered around climate change but “Before The Flood” explores it all. Leonardo DiCaprio narrates and leads the journey. Projecting a sense of urgency, this documentary takes viewers across the world. Throughout “Before The Flood” there’s strong visuals showcasing the harsh effects of climate change. These visuals may be the wake up call for the world as seeing is believing.

Things begin with Leonardo DiCaprio giving a speech at the UN Climate Change Conference. From here begins a journey across the world. The point of this journey is to show the impact of man-made pollution. While other environmental documentaries have picked a particular focus, this film provides more of a summation.

These little tidbits do not provide any revelatory information, but instead supplement the visuals. DiCaprio does a fantastic job of bringing us up and then down. With each destination things tend to start with a beautiful side of a landscape that is quickly juxtaposed against destruction. There’s a basic outline of the cause of destruction. But despite the simplicity of the information, what we see has the greatest impact. This is a perfect example of where a picture is literally worth 1000 words. Any person adequately versed in current events would gain little knowledge from “Before The Flood.” But from the beginning to end, this documentary’s focus is on urgency and change, not some new revelation. The impact from the destruction we see is far more revelatory and frightening than what we’ve already heard in the past.

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The shots throughout the film are both breathtaking and shocking.

The shots throughout the film are both breathtaking and shocking. From walking on a land of ice to exploring an oil-soaked wasteland, “Before The Flood” caught my interest. That intrigue is supplemented by the multiple perspective shots and means of exploration. DiCaprio spends quite a bit of time on foot, but he also takes to the air and beneath the ocean. From the ground, to above it, to below it, the impact is shown on all fronts.

Painting the picture of a scorched Earth definitely had my attention. What caught my attention even more was the effect it had on the people. The pollution in China has pushed its citizens to the point of wearing masks. Many are afraid the the carcinogenic effects of the pollution and it’s heartbreaking to see how confined they have become. Other populations are shown having to rely on cheap energy. Countries like India are shown to have problems providing energy for their citizens. This creates an ultimatum for cheap, dirty energy versus more expensive, clean energy. This section of the film carries an emotionally informative weight that brings things together.

Director Fisher Stevens and Leonardo DiCaprio send a strong message with “Before The Flood.” There’s a lot to cover when it comes to climate change and they condense it in a palatable format. This is a documentary with a motive but it’s a clear motive. They present a problem, show the severity of the problem, present a solution, and finally show what happens if that solution is not implemented. It’s entertaining and terrifying all at once. Finally what makes this environmental documentary even more valid is the footprint of the film. They don’t deny that they are part of the problem, but offset that problem. Contributions to the rain forest were made to make up for the environmental cost of the film. Overall, “Before The Flood’s” message is heard loud and clear.

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“Before The Flood’s” message is heard loud and clear.

“Before The Flood” has a limited theater release on October 21, 2016 and will premiere on the National Geographic channel on October 30, 2016.

  • Documentary Score

Summary

Director Fisher Stevens and Leonardo DiCaprio send a strong message with "Before The Flood." There's a lot to cover when it comes to climate change and they condense it in a palatable format. This is a documentary with a motive but it's a clear motive. They present a problem, show the severity of the problem, present a solution, and finally show what happens if that solution is not implemented. It's entertaining and terrifying all at once. Finally what makes this environmental documentary even more valid is the footprint of the film. They don't deny that they are part of the problem, but offset that problem. Contributions to the rain forest were made to make up for the environmental cost of the film. Overall, "Before The Flood's" message is heard loud and clear.

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About The Author

Ryan

Ryan has been fascinated with film and pop culture since childhood. Throughout college he "played it safe" taking the more lucrative route of being a computer programmer while squeezing in film related courses where he could...but even during his post college career, he could never escape his true passion. After following one of his favorite blogs for a long time, he approached the site's Editor about writing and they reluctantly gave him a shot. He later became their Senior Writer which led to a variety of other projects, radio show appearances, features, and high profile celebrity interviews. Despite his success with blogging, he still wanted more so in order to expand his creative addiction, he merged his IT skills and blogging know-how to create FilmFad.com which has continued to grow into a creative Mecca of pop-culture fun and integrity.   [email protected]    Film Fad

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