Colin Beavan, Michelle Conlin
Michelle: I’ve definitely found the food to be the hardest. Like, right now I just want to go get a baked good.
Colin: Why do you think food’s the hardest for you?
Michelle: Ummm…because I can’t eat anything that tastes good?
A New York man, his wife, and their infant daughter embark on a year long project in which they try to make no net environmental impact. They produce as little trash as possible, only eat fruits & vegetables from a farmer’s market, cut out any transportation that produces CO2, as well as many other restrictions.
So what would YOU be willing and able to give up from your life if it meant improving all of our lives on the planet? That’s the basic question Colin Beavan wants people to answer for themselves. They don’t all have to go to the extreme and get rid of everything that Colin and Michelle did, but just a little sacrifice here and there could help.
There are times when Colin is called self-promoting and attention-seeking (he’s an author writing his next book on the project after all), but the good thing is that he recognizes and owns up to that freely. He even debates with himself over whether or not the whole idea for the project is stupid. Especially the no-electricity for 6 months aspect of it. That’s probably the toughest thing for them to deal with, though at least it gets them out of the house a lot more. They begin exploring New York City in ways they’ve never done before.
This is an amusing and entertaining documentary with a likable family at the center (Michelle is particularly funny…and patient!). It will probably get you thinking about your own consumption habits as well. You will NOT want to go to the extreme of Colin and his family, but it could give you a better idea about what you could sacrifice, and how you could go about doing it.
My only real problem with the movie is that it seemed like some of the family trouble caused was glossed over a little. I can’t say that for sure because it’s hard to know if something wasn’t included in the movie, but we start to go down some interesting roads a couple times that quickly got left behind.
Still, this is one worth checking out. Even if you’re not overly concerned with your environmental impact (I’ll admit, I care to an extent, but I’m too lazy to do much about it), I think you could still enjoy this one. Just don’t buy it on DVD because the plastic packaging would just be more trash in your local landfill…
Lack of refrigeration would be a very difficult obstacle to overcome.
10 – 1 for seemingly glossing over a few things – .3 because yeah, okay, Colin can get on my nerves from time to time = 8.7