It’s better to light a candle than curse the darkness.
Run time: 1h 34mins
Director: Louie Psihoyos
IMDb rating: 8.3/10
In One Sentence What Is Racing Extinction About?
We are in a race to save the planet from a mass extinction event greater than that which wiped out the dinosaurs.
Animal species become extinct naturally, such is the way that evolution and selective pressure works. However, human activity has accelerated this process to the point where, over the next 100 hundred years, the planet could see half of all species disappear for good.
In Racing Extinction, a team of artists and activists lead by filmmaker Louie Psihoyos (also see The Cove and The Game Changers), go undercover to reveal some shocking details of animals killed as commodities to sell- some of which are now endangered. Through photography and powerful imagery, the aim is to invoke an awakening that will help these species, and ultimately ourselves, win the race against extinction.
Why Is Racing Extinction A Vegan Documentary?
Although this film isn’t directly about becoming vegan, there is reason to include it under the umbrella of a ‘vegan documentary’. Firstly, the main drivers of global species decline are habitat destruction and pollution- both of which are leading to climate change. Much of the removal of natural habitat is to do with food production- namely meat, eggs and dairy. Therefore a reduction in demand for these puts less pressure on the natural environment. As has been pointed out in other documentaries, animal agriculture is a leading polluter, so again- eating less animal products should lead to less pollution.
There are other vegan strands in Racing Extinction. Some species have been driven to the brink by hunting, and not necessarily for food. The documentary uses the example of Manta Rays and a village in Indonesia. These beautiful, passive creatures are being decimated for nothing more than their gills, which are then sold and shipped to China for their perceived medicinal properties; properties which stem from mere old wives’ tales.
Unfortunately, this story is being told the world over. People making a livelihood by killing animals as they believe they have no choice. Racing Extinction shows there is an alternative in that more money is to be made by keeping these animals alive. The site of thousands of shark fins drying out on a rooftop in Hong Kong is enough to make one believe that whatever we do, it’s too little, too late. But just as those living in the Indonesian fishing village had choices, so does everyone else. We’re the only generation left who can do something about the predicament of our planet. And it may just be that the fate of our species depends on these choices too.
Where And How To Watch Racing Extinction
Buy and watch on YouTube here
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*denotes an affiliate link from which I’ll receive a small percentage if you purchase. And I do mean small. Tiny in fact.
Is Racing Extinction On Netflix?
Official Website: Racingextinction.com
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