Animals Staring as Humans in movies help get the attention of “the big picture”

Last week in our book Communicating Nature, the chapter five reading we were introduced to Television and Films as being one of the most popular form of entertainment in this country. Most American’s view TV programs to reflect environmental issues or values, as our book states. Or children, like myself grow up watching Disney movies without knowing the real meaning of the setting of the movie. For example, our book talks about the movie, FernGully: The Last Rainforest (1992) really told the tale of the ecosystem.

Children views just see the movie as animals that are not really about humans at all. Essentially the animals play the humans, which makes the movie more entertain-able for children. In this movie it features “fairy people” living in this enchanted rainforest. The story line makes the viewers want to know more about these creatures and their home lives into the plot. The setting and the colors, images and animals look foreign to young viewers and automatically pulls them in. It is something different and new to them. But what really is happening is, that the “humans” are tearing down their homes and uprooting their rainforest for profit.

The movies, is explaining what deforestation is for a child’s view. But I did not notice when I was a child about what was happening on our planet from one of my favorite movies. The two main characters, Crysta and Zak fall in love and vow to save the forest, but it may be too late because of what is happening around them. Deforestation is a metaphor for what is happening in this movie. Deforestation is the permanent destruction of forests in order to make the land available for other uses. An estimated 18 million acres of forest, which is roughly the size of the country, Panama, are lost each year to this act.

What I am trying to say is, I did not know that the movie Ferngully, was about deforestation growing up and reading this chapter has opened my eyes to the issue that the director was trying to get across to children and their parents in 1992. Although, it is not a Disney movie it still has the controversial current event happening to tell the story like a Disney movie does.



2 thoughts on “Animals Staring as Humans in movies help get the attention of “the big picture”

  1. I really think that Fern Golley is a very important movie for kids. It allows them to see deforestation or what it is. Its much better to teach them while entertaining them rather than boring them honestly. This movie allows for people to feel connected to the environment at a much deeper level.
    -Tymandra Amburgy-


  2. I fell like movies like Fern Golley would probably be hard to make in this day of age. I believe if a movie was made in the similar format about global warming for instance, it would most likely by attacked because of the many different opinions. I think everyone can agree that deforestation is no doubt bad for the environment, but for the harder topics that could definitely help children tremendously, it would upset those who don’t believe in it. Using children movies to get kids to do the right thing for the environment or anything in general is a smart way to convey messages as it sticks with kids longer because of that emotional connection they had as a child. The best thing I could compare it to is when discussing Pluto and the thousands of people who supported Pluto being a planet despite the facts. If an idea is ingrained early, it stick forever


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