Trashed: Film Review

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Garbage: it’s everywhere. In the streets, in landfills, certainly on the marquee at your local Cineplex. But it’s also carnage, and the kind that threatens to disrupt the near future of humanity if nothing is done about the amount of consumption and waste that the global human population commits on a daily basis.

Jeremy Irons takes us on a fundamentally depressing but ultimately uplifting journey throughout this documentary, showing us how waste is created and abusively handled by political and industrial factions that care only about turning a profit and not about the footprint (or dare we say foot cavern) they are leaving on the planet. After movies like An Inconvenient Truth and the BBC series Planet Earth, not to mention the annual devastating occurrences of hurricanes, tsunamis, and typhoons whose frequency and intensity look increasingly like the result of man’s environmental folly, we are left with the question: is the time for warnings over? Is it too late to pay heed? Is the human race incapable of collectively moving toward any purposeful solution, destined to be buried under its own thoughtlessness and myopia? Perhaps, as Gandalf would say, the end is here.

There is a counter theory, of sorts, that waste and garbage are really just the next “black gold” for the energy industry which can now take basically any large amount of landfill contents and convert it into fuel. Wars, we are told, will soon be waged over garbage and landfills. People of the Middle East rejoice: we can now invade and exploit every country on the planet, not just those whose names end in “istan”.

War: it’s the new global export.