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.