Thirty-two years ago, Robert Swan made history as the first person to walk to both poles. Even as a young man, these grueling expeditions took a harsh toll on his body. Passing directly beneath the hole in the ozone layer, Swan’s face became badly burned and his eyes even changed color.
But the Arctic explorer now says that all of that physical duress pales in comparison to the agony of watching his son go through the same experience 32 years later.
This past winter, after years of preparation, Robert Swan set out to trek the 600 miles to the South Pole again — this time, with his 24-year-old son Barney by his side. And this time, with an additional challenge built in: they would survive exclusively off of renewable energy.
It was a “swan song” with a very important goal. If the father-son team could get by on renewable energy in the harshest environment on Earth, then people in the comfort of their own homes could do it too.
Natalie Portman credits “Eating Animals,” Jonathan Safran Foer’s 2009 best-selling book about the moral and environmental implications of factory farming, for converting her to veganism.
The Jericho, New York-raised actress has no illusions, though, that her new documentary adaption of Foer’s book will convert others.
As the producer and narrator of “Eating Animals,” Portman says she hopes the film raises awareness of industrialized agriculture without preaching or proselytizing.
Although the movie is clearly concerned with animal suffering — seen in footage of chickens with deformed legs and cows bleeding from udders — it also points out the environmental impacts of large-scale meat production, notably the water pollution and human ailments that have been linked to pig waste.
If “Eating Animals” offers a solution, though, it isn’t necessarily in widespread veganism or activism, it’s in supporting small farmers who treat their animals humanely and leave a relatively modest footprint on the Earth.
Billionaire Ray Dalio thinks that “ocean exploration is much more exciting and much more important than space exploration” — and his latest project aims to convince the rest of the world of that too.
Dalio, who runs the world’s largest hedge fund (Bridgewater Associates manages over $160 billion), is teaming with “Titanic” director and deep-sea documentarian James Cameron on a new project, called OceanX. Ocean X will fund new research and exploration of the oceans along with media, such as documentary films and virtual reality content.
OceanX “will enable explorers and researchers to explore the unseen ocean, map uncharted areas of the world, observe rare deep-sea creatures and pursue scientific and medical breakthroughs — and then bring all of these wonders back to the wider world through captivating media,” the Dalio announced in a press release on Wednesday.
In December of 2016, Garrett Martin, a 22-year-old business graduate turned filmmaker, convinced three relative strangers to join him on a four-and-a-half-month trek through Chilean Patagonia.
The idea was to explore an informal new trail system and to create a feature-length documentary that would pay homage to the Greater Patagonian Trail, the surrounding region and its people, and their local environmental movement—and also chronicle the challenges of making a coherent story out these diverse elements.
To complicate matters, Martin and his young crew would be unaided, overloaded, and pitifully underfunded.
And yet, they pulled it off. “Unbounded” had its theatrical and online release last week—almost exactly a year after the crew completed their hike.
The result is an entertaining, narrative-driven film that offers no shortage of Andean eye-candy. But what is perhaps most compelling is the way in which “Unbounded” reveals four very young travelers as they deepen in reaction to an intense immersion into raw wilderness and Patagonian culture.
The Marshall Islands, a low-lying island nation in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, is home to more than 50,000 people.
About half of them are under 18. And if studies are right, rising seas caused by climate change could make their country uninhabitable within their lifetime.
In “The Last Generation,” a new, interactive documentary from FRONTLINE and The GroundTruth Project, meet three Marshallese children who are grappling with the possibility of seeing their homeland disappear.
Matthieu Rytz’s New York Times Op-Doc, “Sinking Islands, Floating Nation,” paints a visually stunning portrait of Kiribati, an island nation in the central Pacific Ocean that’s facing an existential threat from rising sea levels.
The Op-Doc is a companion piece to Rytz’s feature documentary “Anote’s Ark,” which follows the country’s now-retired president Anote Tong as he races to save a country that is slowly being swallowed by the ocean.