A Better Way to Procrastinate for Finals
By John Bieschke
Staff Reporter/Ad Manager
Virunga, the first documentary focuses on Virunga National Park in the east Congo which is caught in the middle of a violent civil war. The few apes that live in the park are all orphans and rely on the park rangers for care. The surrogate family bonds form between the rangers and the apes; they care, and love for each other, like family. As the film progresses, the innocent family is torn apart by war and violence from the surrounding areas. When the dust settles, the family of humans and apes is changed forever and their playful innocence is lost. This film addresses the issues of poaching and civil wars in a real manner that is worth watching and worth knowing about. This Netflix original film receives a 4 out of 5 stars.
Living on One Dollar
Living on One Dollar is a thoughtful film, or at least it tries to be. Four young filmmakers travel from America to Guatemala to perform a social experiment by living off one dollar a day like the local farmers. This is noble in thought and properly executed, but poorly spirited at first due to their initial complaints. As members of the first world, they only understand luxuries of paved roads and smart phones. After some educational hunger and sickness the locals deal with on a daily, these four boys are opened to a new human level, one of brotherly bonds and communal love the natives use to get through the struggle. As the interactions with the locals become more personal, they understand the universal pain of only having the shirt on your back even more, especially when the community reaches out to them. These small acts of kindness, like sharing a meal or taking a walk together stand as testaments of human kindness that manifest in shared struggle. This film was slow to start but strong to finish, therefore it earns a 3.5 out of 5 stars.
Culture High is the final film and arguably the most controversial because it addresses the politics behind pot in the last 60 years. This is not your dads marijuana documentary like the propaganda film Reefer Madness, and it makes itself apparent in that sense. Featuring a range from respected intellectuals, stand up’s, and former government workers they all talk about what they consider the inarguable positives of pot versus the fictional and media generated negatives. This film is smart and informative, but also optimistic. Optimistic because all those featured conclude that the current debates about marijuana will be antique and useless in the next five to ten years. This films ranks the highest of the three and receives a 4.8 out of 5 stars.
All of these issues are real and cannot be swept under the rug. They are problems that will need to be addressed sooner or later; as the world increases in size it becomes over crowded to the point where we have to deal with difficulties that may not be our own. They demand attention – attention that can easily be given especially when they are just a click away on Netflix.