The 11th Hour, global warming and awareness

The 11th Hour earthEarlier this evening I caught a sneak preview of The 11th Hour (Warner Independent Pictures) at the Seattle Art Museum thanks to Yelp & TheWarrenReport. The film, produced & narrated by Leonardo DiCaprio (no joke), looks back at global changes – namely global warming. The film is somewhat similar to the Al Gore’s heavily marketed An Inconvenient Truth. While Gore’s film was staged in a presentation-like environment with rich Keynote slides focusing heavily on Hurricane Katrina, DiCaprio’s narrated film featured interview clips from 70 authoritative scientists, designers, and academic figures – focusing on global warming, sustainability, and forward thinking.

Towards the end of the evening, an open floor type discussion was held. An idea was raised concerning whether or not movies like An Inconvenient Truth or The 11th Hour could successfully educate younger audiences. With DiCaprio producing & narrating The 11th Hour, would the film be more appealing for younger audiences than Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth? What do you think?

Recalling the very end of the film as the copyright warning scrolled up the screen, I couldn’t help but wonder why the film was not made available online. If the goal of these types of films is to educate individuals across the board, sharing the film online would reach more viewers. Understanding that studios incur considerable costs during production, why aren’t major corporations / organizations who support a more sustainable future share the bill?

In any event, check out the film if you found An Inconvenient truth interesting. The film opens on August 17th. Check out The 11th Hour Action blog for even more info, links, and personal stories. Consume less, live more.

Discuss - 13 Comments

  1. Sounds like DiCaprio is trying to fill in Gore’s shoes.

  2. Emon says:

    As much as they claim they’d like to educate the youth, Warner is in it to make money by riding the ‘Truth’ wave. You are right, why not make it available online or screen at a large free event? I’d think a large screening at, let’s say, Central Park with sponsors supporting cause would be ideal, not unlike Gore’s concert last month.

  3. Recalling the very end of the film as the copyright warning scrolled up the screen, I couldn’t help but wonder why the film was not made available online.

    Two words: lawyers.

    Ideally, since the film has 5 Exec. Producers (one of them seemingly related to Leonardo) they should be able to distribute online with less risk. Obviously I don’t know the particulars, but usually the more exec. producers, the more the risk and cost is spread out across individuals/companies.

    But perhaps going a more traditional route, while slower, will make the movie’s message seem more “real” to audiences that wouldn’t be convinced by some “indy movie” like Inconvenient Truth.

    Thanks for the heads up about it though. Otherwise I might not have heard about it. Go blogs! :)

  4. rabsteen says:

    the goal of this film is like any other film — to be successful and tell a story. the story just happens to be one about the environment, but that doesn’t mean that warner somehow construes their role as performing their civic duty.

    what’s frustrating is how political and social issues have been co-opted by fashionable hollywood-types. no amount of movies or RED campaigns will substitute for the fact that people actually have to participate in order to change things.

  5. I agree these stuff needs to be made available online. I mean look at those internet phenomenon. If a guy using a web cam can be made popular, a fully developed film should do wonders =D. But like Rabsteen said, we still gotta do our part. Now where’s that plastic bottle…

  6. Jim C says:

    WANTED: Creative looking for other creatives who reject the notion that being an artist means having to believe in trite, namby-pamby issues of global consciousness and preach sanctimonious sermons to the less enlightened.

    The global warming movement is as much about acquiring power as is working 30 years of your life preparing to run for President of the United States. Al Gore’s MO didn’t suddenly change when he lost the bid for the White House; he just found another route to influence, control and central planning. Those who don’t understand why environmental policy is a power grab need to do less preaching and more reading, thinking and learning.

    Please excuse the harshness of my comment. I love reading creatives’ opinions about graphic and interactive design, but loathe their lame, naive, stereotypical worldviews.

  7. Jim C says:

    I love everything else on Derek’s blog, though.

  8. Derek says:

    WANTED: Creative looking for other creatives who reject the notion that being an artist means having to believe in trite, namby-pamby issues of global consciousness and preach sanctimonious sermons to the less enlightened.

    Explain how this post could be considered preaching? I see two main points raised: 1) would a film produced and directed by DiCaprio reach younger viewers (as opposed to Gore’s film), and 2) if the film was created to convey a message to the widest audience, why isn’t it free?

    * These two points came to mind after sitting through an open discussion after the film.

  9. Myles says:

    I think the real ‘inconvenient truth’ is that nobody gives a crap (at least that’s what their actions say). People can’t/won’t go out of their way to help the environment if it means extra work for them.

    As far as global warming I hear it’s all BS. Of course I haven’t done my homework and am only saying that from what I hear. Not only could I care less but I’m not trying to cash in on the idea.

  10. well global warming is far from BS and the climate crisis is anything but namby-pamby, and a lot of really level-headed intelligent people across disciplines agree that it’s something we (Americans especially) need to deal with. No preaching necessary, if you want to help preserve the beauty of the earth for our children it’s at least something worth considering.

    And Jim, you comment sounds more preachy than anything else on this post. Here’s Derek’s call to action, “In any event, check out the film if you found An Inconvenient truth interesting”(Which I would consider far from preaching, but but that’s just going off hearing what real preaching is like). I think it’s great that Derek brought up this topic on his site, it’s adds credibility to the issue in my mind.

  11. Myles says:

    Your idea to support global warming comes from the fact that a lot of ‘level-headed intelligent people across disciplines agree’ that global warming is true? That doesn’t mean a thing. There are quite a bit of sources out there that talk about why global warming is false. Of course, that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t do something to clean up the place. There is always room for improvement.

    Climate has changed all throughout history. Why the hell are we worrying about the so-called ‘global warming’ anyway? Shouldn’t we be putting our time and money into something that might be of use.

  12. @myles – no the reason I try and do my part to not add to the climate crisis isn’t just because intelligent people believe it, I’ve done the research myself and believe it’s important because I’ve personally invested my own time into looking into it. I was just responding to the “namby-pamby” remark. But having academics from across disciplines certainly helps substantiate a claim of this magnitude, though it may not make us want to believe it any more. In fact, I’d guess that our reticence to buy into it is partially due to that the very fact that it is what academics have deemed true – we Americans never like it when the academy tells us what we ought to do!

  13. Maja says:

    I watch the film The 11th Hour the other day. I found the film very interesting
    I think the world should start to wake up!
    The reason why, americans normally donĀ“t like the words of saving the planet.
    Is because they are some of the people on earth there really need to move there ass.
    If they want to deliver a valuable place on earth for our grand children.

    What did we just have before Christmas 2008, the famous words Credit crunch.
    Here we go, maybe its not easy to sell a item in a supermarked.
    If the facts are different from other items, here Im talking about items there can help reducing CO2 in the atmosphere. Before we have designed the earth to something like Mars.
    There was a big fight about,getting the first human being to the moon.
    But why not a race against save the planet. It is here we all live, we all have a responsibility for our actions. Get it!!!
    Instead of just sitting there waiting for your take away pizza or burger you have just ordered.

    Yes your right, Im not from United states, Im from Denmark, but have lived the last few years in London!!!!