What is the story about?
This documentary looks at various people employing diverse strategies to save water and strengthen sanitation before the Earth runs out of time.
The conservation of water is an important topic in today's world, where many parts of the world are rapidly going dry and drinking water is fast becoming a luxury. The makers deserve brownie points just for shining light on various efforts geared towards protection of water sources and water recycling. Yet, the documentary feels like a shiny PR piece highlighting the role of big corporations in conserving water. It is problematic to see celebrities like Matt Damon and Jaden Smith get equal footage as the real-life warriors battling water scarcity on the ground. Maybe their intentions were noble, but it certainly takes the sheen off the message.
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The cinematography by Thomas Williams is strictly perfunctory.
The various strategies employed for conserving water in Kenya and India deserve special mention.
By keeping the focus on water conservation efforts outside the Western world limited to only Kenya and India, the director’s have committed a huge blunder. Water scarcity is something that affects other countries as well, and it would have made for a balanced documentary if it had focussed on these countries as well. The shots of poverty-stricken people in both countries is also symbolic of how the Western world still views these countries. There's no mention of water scarcity in Latin America, Israel or even Central Asia.
Also, it is probably a compulsion to include them for getting more audiences interested in the documentary, but it would’ve been better to leave out the “star power” and focus on the real-life changemakers instead. Their viewpoints add nothing of substance. And if you've watched the Mark Ruffalo film Dark Waters, the inclusion of DuPont as a sponsor of the documentary will make you wince.
Did I enjoy it?
Yes, I enjoyed it. It provides a lot of useful information and forces us to think of water conservation as an immediate need.
Do I recommend it?
Yes, it is an important documentary which all should watch in spite of its shortcomings.