Divided into five chapters, “Tomorrow” looks at different countries and cities to explore how the local communities are living green and working together towards a happy and healthy lifestyle for all.
Tomorrow, April 22, 2017, the “March for Science” will take place in Washington, D.C. and over 500 cities across the world to bring government attention to the importance and impact of science research on the future of our global civilization (a cause that some in positions of power are planning to de-fund). It is an opportunity to have collective voices heard and to hopefully inspire others to make a difference. With a similar agenda, and just in time for Earth Day, comes an eye-opening eco-documentary from French actress Mélanie Laurent (“Inglorious Basterds”) and French activist, author, and filmmaker Cyril Dion, also appropriately called “Tomorrow” (“Demain”).
“Tomorrow” begins with shocking statistics about how the demise of the human race is due to three contributing factors: climate change, the destruction of the earth’s surface, and population growth. It is nothing we haven’t all heard before, but instead of just reciting facts and taking a doom and gloom perspective, this documentary gives insight into how we can make a difference locally, in our towns, on our streets and backyards.
Divided into five chapters, “Tomorrow” looks at different countries and cities to explore how the local communities are living green and working together towards a happy and healthy lifestyle for all (and I’m assuming the filmmakers even planned their flights accordingly so as to not use too much fuel for their various travels).
Chapter One focuses on agriculture, mainly urban farming in Detroit. The main takeaway here is that cutting down on meat consumption, even if only one less day a week, will have a huge impact on reducing our carbon footprint and saving resources like fossil fuels and fresh water. Chapter Two is all about energy, the goal here is to eventually have all energy be produced by the sun, wind, or water and not carbon, coal, or oil (plus- geothermal heat is free!). We travel to the energy-conscious city of Copenhagen, where 21% of people get around on foot, 26% use bikes, and 20% use mass transit. That means 67% of people don’t drive. As a Los Angeles-native, this is one of the most mind-blowing facts to comprehend.
The silver lining that “Tomorrow” emphasizes is that it is not too late, but only if we act now.
Chapter Three focuses on the economy and the necessity for an ecosystem of currency, not just one universal standard. We visit Switzerland to get a better understanding of their two-currency system, which claims to be more resilient than just a single method of payment. Chapter Four talks about democracy and we look to India for a better understanding of how a proactive local government is giving a new meaning to the word “democracy.” Chapter Five is all about education. We look to Finland to gain a better understanding of their inspiring school system, which educators say is due to the trust in their child-centered teaching methods, no national testing and having teachers undergo lessons in child psychology before running a classroom. It is typical for a classroom in Finland to have two teachers per fifteen students, a stark difference to the underfunded and overcrowded classrooms in America.
It’s a scary thought to know that at this rate, catastrophic changes can happen by the end of the century. The silver lining that “Tomorrow” emphasizes is that it is not too late, but only if we act now. The consequences of our actions have been overlooked because these effects don’t happen overnight but take time to develop. Unfortunately, we’re feeling the heat (pun intended) and this is the critical time for humanity to understand that how we have treated our planet is catching up with us; Fortunately, we can still do something about it. We only get one world, let’s do our best to take care of it, starting today.
“Tomorrow” is not rated. 118 minutes. Now playing at the Laemmle Music Hall.