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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Manufactured Landscapes

Manufactured Landscapes is a filmed documentary regarding how our industrialized society has changed the landscape of the planet. According to the photographer, Edward Burtynsky the film shows nature being transformed through industry.

The film follows Burtynsky through China and exposes the effects of the country’s massive industrial revolution and the dumping grounds of its waste. It allows the viewer to comprehend what the industrialized society of today has done to the environment and landscape of the earth we all share.

Since so much of what people in North America buy is made in China the film is correctly focused on China. We can all certainly agree that the emerging economies of China and India will create a huge demand on environmental resources. This demand will begin to strip the earth of its natural resources; and when resources become scarce…the end result is typically war. There have been many wars fought over resources throughout the ages.

What about e-waste – Did you know that most recycled electronics and copper wire ends up back in China? This film will probably change your perspective on waste and waste management. That can of pop you just finished drinking – will you throw the can in a recycle bin? Where does it end up after that? What about your old cell phone or computers? What actually happens to them after you drop them off to a recycling centre that is holding a special pick-up for e-waste? You will have to watch the documentary to find out.

The film itself has very little dialogue. The images themselves should say it all. After all, a picture says a thousand words. The film will continue to display landscapes of assembly lines, mines, and mine tailings, dams, trash heaps, recycling yards, quarries, refineries and piles of industrial and e-waste. It is up to the viewer to decide how they feel about the images that will be forever imprinted on the brain.

You are probably asking yourself why you want to see a film showing piles of what we call garbage. This documentary should at the very least make you analyze the waste you throw away. We have all partaken in the output of waste on a daily basis. If we continue to use up natural resources to provide materials for our consumption and just leave behind piles of waste – what will the landscape of the future look like?
I extend a promotion for everyone to take the time to see this film. On Friday, December 10th at 10:00 a.m. there will be a screening of this documentary at the movie theatre.

See you there.

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