The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

Earth Week Documentary Increases Awareness, Calls Audience to Action

“We’re Homo sapiens – the wise humans.”

Life on Earth has existed for 4 billion years, while humankind has existed for only the past 200,000. For 4 billion years, Earth has formed a legacy from which humans were able to survive. For 4 billion years, Earth has managed to cope without the destruction of man.

Humankind has done more harm to the planet in the 200,000 years in which we have existed than in the 4 billion years in which we have not.

And we’re Homo sapiens, the wise humans.

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The movie “Home” is an hour-and-a-half-long documentary depicting the struggle of our planet against the power of mankind. Through magnificent shots of aerial views, “Home” calls the audience to step in and take action against the destruction of our planet.

As a part of Earth Week, the school’s Green Team arranged to show this environmentally-conscious film at the Eagle Theatre yesterday, April 21 in hopes of bringing awareness to the pollution we have caused and the consequences we may face in the future.

The film was a preview of Earth Day today, April 22.

“Home” begins with descriptions of the formation of Earth and progresses to the eventual development of humankind – an incident that has altered, perhaps irrevocably, the story of our planet.

According to the documentary, while human life initially depended on Earth’s resources, in the past few decades alone we have transformed our planet into a manufacturing technology hub. And although this has made most of our lives easier, it has taken a serious toll on the green grasses and wild plains of Earth.

The film reveals that we have destroyed many geographical landmarks due to the desire to create agriculture and bustling cities. In nearly 40 years, the Amazon has been reduced by 20 percent due to human intervention.

Dubai, a city with no resources whatsoever to thrive on, has managed to not only construct the tallest skyscraper in the world, but also create artificial islands. In the past 60 years, over 2 billion people have moved to cities. Skyscrapers have and are still being built across the world.

Humans, moreover, are in the process of draining natural resources. 20 percent of the Earth’s population consumes 80 percent of its resources. One in every ten rivers no longer make it to the sea. While water has grown to become a rare commodity for the poverty living on Earth, it is wasted on green lands, which are abandoned year to year, in Saudi Arabia.

Through our usage of coal and oil, we have increased the level of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere. Over the past 40 years, 40 percent of the poles have melted away, and many scientists believe that by 2030, there may be very little of the Arctic remaining.

Poverty, hunger and sanitation issues have skyrocketed in our growing world; 5,000 people die daily due to lack of drinking water, and 1 billion do not access to healthy water. The planet is a reflection of what humankind has done to it.

However, while the film addresses many controversial factors that humans have caused, it also acknowledges many deeds that have been pu forward to preserve our planet. Humans, through the establishment of national parks, solar panels and windmills, have taken giant steps in the right direction.

“Home” is a dramatic film that stresses the idea that an individual can break the walls built by humankind. An individual can change Earth back into a balanced habitat for humans and nature. An individual can change Earth back into a place we can call “Home.”

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  • Edmund Xu | Apr 28, 2011 at 3:11 am

    I like this review, but only wish it were longer. Much of it was too generalized and didn’t convey the entire message. Too bad, there must have been time constraints on writing this piece. A good one though, nonetheless.