By: Amber Ceja
Green, is a documentary set in Indonesia featuring Green, an orangutan and victim to human impact by logging, burning and clearing rain forests for multiple industries producing: wood, pulp, paper, and palm-oil, to name a few. It is quite unique in that the film is not narrated but still creatively portrays the effects of human consumerism on tropical rain forests and wildlife; that us humans are accountable for our actions and that we have compromised the lives and living of others and in turn ourselves. I find it somewhat objective with no narration to suggest a point of view, but the film does advocate on behalf of Green and other wildlife who suffer on behalf of these actions. Seeing the film instead of watching and listening is powerful; the narration is in one’s mind.
Viewers watch as the film begins, going back and forth between scenes of Green, who is sick and being looked after by medical staff, and scenes of the rain forest; peaceful and full of life. All at once is a scene where Green wakes to a lawn mower and as the sound gets louder, it transforms and becomes the sound of chainsaws and tractors. Suddenly we see trees being cut down, burned and collected, clearing the forests acre by acre; stripping away the land that others like Green considered home.
Going forth, we begin to see where all these trees go: into factories, where they are cut into various shapes and sizes and polished to be sold, becoming glamorized in ads and store windows as luxurious and exotic floors and furnishings. Some go to the paper business and become our magazines and newspapers which are often thrown away if even bought. Animals, left without homes are chained, put into cages or cells for human viewing- for entertainment. Baby palm trees replace the rain forests and when grown, pulp is collected and sent to factories to produce the widely consumed palm oil; air pollution accompanies production.
I won’t spoil the ending of the film but I will urge that this documentary be watched and shared. It is a hauntingly real story about real issues and real lives. I loved, very much, watching Green without narration- it made a much bigger impact on me and got me thinking about how I contribute to issues like this; how I can be more mindful; how I can help.
Patrick Rouxel is a freelance filmmaker for environmental conservation. He produced, directed, filmed and edited this film, Green. He looks for no funding for his film, though he may have help from friends and such- he ultimately strives to create awareness. He distributed the film freely on the internet ( the link is posted below) and has sent it to film festivals worldwide but has claimed that major broadcasters aren’t showing the film. Although a 2009 documentary, it continues to be very relevant. Still in 2016, the fight against logging continues and Indonesia is one of the affected countries to this business.