Ecological Films: Raising Awareness and Inspiring Action

5 Films on Ecologie

Film and video provide powerful tools for raising awareness of environmental issues. They can be pedagogical, playful or even carry a message of satire.

In Koyaanisqatsi, le soldat humain Jake Sully doit piller les ressources naturelles de la planète farouche Pandora ou voir des puissantes entreprises industriales ravager les terres.

An Inconvenient Truth

An Inconvenient Truth is a powerful documentary that shook the world. It educated a whole generation of students about global warming and the dangers it poses to our planet. While it makes a compelling argument, it also has two major flaws that will limit its impact. First, it shows a strong political bias via biographical snippets and personal reflections from its director. Second, the film sometimes seems to be more about Gore than global warming.

Despite these missteps, this is a must-see for anyone who believes that Global Warming is real and that humans need to do something about it. It will certainly raise awareness and make people think, especially about what they can do to reduce their carbon footprint. It may even make them want to recycle or drive hybrid cars. But it will probably not change their minds about the need to radically alter capitalism and international politics. After all, it is easy to preach to the choir.


Home n’a pas l’air d’être un film alarmiste de la remontée du climat. Pourtant, le réalisateur Yann Arthus-Bertrand veut nous faire conscience de notre tendance à épuiser les ressources de la Terre et à laisser des espèces disparues. C’est pourquoi il a choisi de mettre en lumière les initiatives source d’espoir ouvertes par des acteurs engagés pour une Terre plus durable à la fois écologique et sociale.

Aiming to change viewers’ practices, new ecological filmmaking rethinks the production of films in order to address climate change. At the crossroads of cinema, anthropology and visual studies, this book reveals how filmmakers and their audiences develop communities with non-human beings in order to deconstruct human privilege. By examining these new cinematic ecologies, the authors propose a different history of film. The emergence of this new film ecology offers a promising alternative to the global warming discourse based on fear and doom.


If you’re looking for a family film on ecologie that doesn’t scream “I’m green!” this is the one. This beautifully animated Japanese film tells the heartbreaking story of a little robot who falls in love with an enigmatic tree that is dying in the face of destruction.

Sofia Exarchou’s second feature is a fascinating study of the unseen hotel workers who make your summer vacation look perfect—but don’t be fooled. These hotel animateurs, whose jobs include leading seniors in group singalongs and performing Showgirls-style dance numbers, aren’t getting paid much.

Whether it’s through a symbiotic relationship with their camera, allowing the environment to affect their work, or reconstituting ecosystems at the moment of projection, the films in this section demonstrate ways that experimental cinema can restore our sensory bond with the living world. A pedagogical dimension to the ecological message is also apparent, with the aim of raising awareness of our dwindling natural resources and encouraging audiences to take action.

Soleil vert

Soleil vert, réalisé en 1973 par Richard Fleischer, présentait un monde à la fuite et apocalyptique dans lequel les ressources alimentaires sont d’autant plus rares. Aux fins de sa sustenance, l’homme est constrained d’utiliser les aliments artificiels Soylent – composés de steak et de lentilles – qui se fabriquent à partir d’organismes humains cadavres.

Le film évoquait, selon Nathalie Magne, des prémonitions apocalyptiques >>. Ce sont aujourd’hui particulièrement vraisemblables, car en Australie, le Soylent System, une marque déposée par Sol Roth, reçoit encore des recettes en ligne de produits alimentaires synthétiques contenant des organismes humains.

Soleil vert fait part d’une nouvelle tendance appelée “film écologie” qui rassemble plusieurs thèmes liés à notre relation avec la planète. Il a joué un rôle important en la période où le changement climatique s’est imposé. Pourtant, nous ne sommes pas à l’époque de la dystopie annoncée dans ce film d’apocalypse. Nous avons à l’ère d’écologie profonde avec d’autres enjeux écologiques inconnus.

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