In April 2005, National Geographic released a documentary series entitled “Strange Days on Planet Earth.” After having watched Volume I, I must say that National Geographic did a great job of conveying their message while also captivating the audience. The film discusses invasive species around the planet, the devastating effects that they cause, and how humans are exacerbating the problem.
Volume I starts with Edward Norton dramatically alluding to the devastation of our planet. In an ominous and spooky opening, Norton uses the connotations of the word “alien” to set the mood of the film. Even though, in this context, the world “alien” is referring to non-native species, after the first five minutes of the film the audience is entranced in the film. This catching opening combined with varying cinematography and special effects makes the documentary interesting and quite captivating. “Strange Days on Planet Earth: Volume I” covered a variety of invasive species and linked them in a way that was both interesting and provocative. It covered topics like water hyacinth in Uganda causing unusable water, termite infestations in New Orleans destroying infrastructure and houses, miconia in Hawaii making the ground unstable by killing off other species and leading to landslides, and the film clearly linked invasions of non-native species with the extinction of native species.
National Geographic’s “Strange Days on Planet Earth: Volume I” is a fascinating and informative documentary on the invasive species that plague our planet. The movie educates watchers on ways that humans are making the problems worse by causing the spread of many species to non-native lands and informs them of some of the many problems that people are facing all over the planet because of invasive species in their homeland. I believe it is important for people to understand human-caused problems in our world so in the future they can be prevented and I would recommend the documentary to anyone.