I have to admit, being told that the class was going to watch a documentary of a man and his entire family “going green” for an entire year was not at the top of my priority list, but hey, if that means I get to relax in a class and watch a movie, who am I to complain? After getting ten minutes into the documentary I was pleasantly surprised by how engaging one man’s idea and belief system could be. This was no ordinary, tree hugging, environmentalist flick by any means (no offense). No Impact Man takes an average Joe, who becomes less average as the film progresses,his entire family, and tests their lifestyle choices for an entire year in the busy city of New York.
“This guy is nuts”, was my initial reaction behind his reasoning to eliminate processed foods, transportation, and worst of all…electricity. No Impact Man’s wife, who at first is extremely reluctant to the whole project, is whom I related most with. Like many, she is your average Starbucks drinking, reality tv loving American, and who can blame her? Through the course of the movie, she finds out she can survive on a more “natural life” and in turn, makes better choices for the family.
Together, No impact Man and Woman have an adorable little girl who just seems to be having a blast with the whole project. To those people who claim the project is considered “child abuse” and view the two as horrible parents, I find myself strongly disagreeing. It is clear that the parents are spending more time with their child visiting the farms, markets, and nature as a whole that will most definitely have a positive impact on her development. Plopping a child down in front of a tv for multiple hours with no interaction and a greasy bag of potato chips seems more “abusive” to me than spending quality time enjoying life.
Overall, No Impact Man gave me a lot to think about. I think this is the only subject matter I find myself having extremely strong views about. Am I myself the perfect model of “green living”? Absolutely not, but I liked what the message was about and hope that I can pay less attention to artificialities and more on a natural world. In ten years I would hate to be forcing my own children to go out and experience life and be met with a snarky reply of, “Isn’t there an app for that?”