For as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to go into space. This doesn’t seem quite so anomalous for a child, but for me, this dream didn’t fade away as I exited childhood and became an adult. I still want to go to space. With IMAX’s new 3D film A Beautiful Planet, I’ve now come the closest to that experience that I probably ever will.
A Beautiful Planet, directed by Tony Myers and filmed in collaboration with NASA, provides viewers with a never-before-seen glimpse of Earth from space. It features stunning – and I mean absolutely stunning – footage of this magnificent planet. From the auroras dancing over the northern poles, to the beautiful turquoise waters of the Caribbean, the vibrancy and diversity of Earth is really showcased in a manner that I’ve never seen before.
Incredibly, all the footage was captured by the astronauts living aboard the International Space Station (ISS). This gives us terrestrially-confined individuals a truly unique vantage point that we would otherwise never have access to. Not only did it give the most remarkable perspective of Earth, but also an appreciation for life aboard the ISS. For me, this provided such a thrill – to get an intimate and candid view of both the challenges and joys of living in a confined space the size of an American football field orbiting the Earth from 400km above.
In addition to just being aesthetically pleasing, there was also a strong theme running throughout of the undeniable human impact on Earth. The scale of the deforestation of the Amazon basin, the glacial melting of the Greenland ice sheet and the fracking fires on the Gulf of Mexico clearly demonstrated just how much human habitation has changed the planet and the run of its natural systems. However, what I found to be a particular strength of the film was that it resisted a ‘doom and gloom’ approach and instead proceeded on a positive note. It focuses on our power to reverse this trend and make meaningful strides towards a more sustainable future. One can’t help but leave feeling both in awe and inspired to protect our incredibly beautiful planet.
Dotti (Nicole) Mazga is a law student currently learning how to make the world a better place in Melbourne. When she’s not hitting the books, you can find her consuming any theatre, dance, or space-related event she can get her hands on.