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Planetary (2015)

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This documentary essay, a sort of cross between one of those Koyaanisqatsi films and An Inconvenient Truth, unwraps the sadly still controversial thesis that the planet is best regarded as one hugely complex living organism that we’re slowly poisoning, melting and destroying. It’s a righteous message, and you can’t fault it for sincerity.

The opening section, mixing shots of the Earth from outer space with recollections from astronauts about what it felt like to see it for real, is deeply moving and beautifully edited. However, once the film settles into a groove of guilt-tripping the viewer and trots out talking head after talking head – an assortment ranging from well-known scientists, philosophers and environmentalists to a guy credited as a “mindfulness and yoga teacher” – the experience grows numbingly monotonous and painfully sanctimonious.

Also, the film’s answer to our problems seems to rest on a lot of vague hippy ideas about getting people to meditate in nature or become Native Americans. Something like that. Worst of all, the unrelenting background score of droning yoga-class music becomes so intensely annoying it’s almost enough to make you want to go out and buy a Hummer so you can drive around the world throwing litter out the window while playing death metal at maximum volume.