The Magnitude of All Things

Grief is universal. We lose a close friend, a beloved pet, a family member, and we mourn. We don’t always do it well, or with dignity, or in the same way as someone else, but we allow ourselves to feel and to grieve the absence of that person in our lives. We might grieve the loss of objects as well: a child’s misplaced stuffed bunny, an album of photos lost in a fire, an old car that served us well, a memento lost to time, a memory that eludes us.

In The Magnitude of All Things, director Jennifer Abbott is granting us the space and the opportunity to grieve the loss of nature, of environment, of our healthy planet. We are watching her die; Abbott likens it to losing a loved one to cancer. There are many losses to grieve along the way: perhaps you’ve been moved by the bleaching of coral reefs, or the extinction of a species, or the destruction of the rain forest. But this disease is man-made, and it does have a cure. We’ve just been witholding it.

There is no lack of documentaries about climate change and the environment, but this one carves out a unique niche in exploring the emotional and personal aspects of climate change and what it means to us, not as a species, but individually, as animals that are part of an eco-system that is rapidly disappearing.

This title is available to stream as part of the Planet In Focus film festival – buy tickets here and watch at home.

13 thoughts on “The Magnitude of All Things

    1. Jay Post author

      I think that is definitely one of few positives to come out of a global quarantine – the environment actually improved! We had less emissions and less consumption, but I’m afraid it will be business as usual once this return to some kind of normal.

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  1. Experience Film

    Life without nature is purgatory at best. I am very sad that so many species are dwindling if not vanishing altogether. I feel like Canada’s doing a pretty good job on this front. Would you agree?

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    1. Jay Post author

      No, I don’t think I can realistically agree. We have more resources and fewer people so we may look better on paper, but politicians commit to goals with good optics with no intention of making good. We drill for oil and build pipelines to transport it. We’re denuding forests and over-fishing and over-tilling. Not investing enough in sustainability, or making enough progress on emissions.
      Canadian culture is very tied to land and nature. We’re campers and hikers and boaters and bikers. We value green space but like most, not enough to sacrifice anything bigger than a straw.

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      1. Experience Film

        Gotcha. Well, everything’s connected. People drill for oil because someone somewhere else demands it. Here in the U.S., (probably very similar situation) what you see is some State Governors talking a big game. Like, Governor Polis here in Colorado (very progressive obvi) – State Government’s proposal to go 100% renewable by 2040. California and the west coast similarly. And that’s good leadership. But of course the Federal Government isn’t even PRETENDING to give a shit about the environment. Big election coming up November 3rd. We gotta kick Trump out and get headed back in the right direction…

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