Before the Flood

Synopsis: A look at how climate change affects our environment and what society can do to prevent the demise of endangered species, ecosystems and native communities across the planet.
Genre: Documentary, News
Director(s): Fisher Stevens
Production: Appian Way Productions
  2 wins & 7 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
96 min


My first

visual memories are of this

framed poster above my crib.

I would stare at it every

night before I went to bed.

My father was an underground

comic distributor.

He's always been this sort of

Zelig of the counterculture

as I like to call him.

Having painted in

Warhol's studio,

being roomies with Lou

Reed, he knew R. Crumb

and all these great

artists of his generation.

I mean, I was brought up on all

kinds of wacky visuals as a kid.

So I would stare at this

painting over and over:

The Garden of Earthly Delights

by Hieronymus Bosch.

It was painted around 1500.

And if you look at these

panels long enough,

they start to tell a story.

In the first panel you have Adam

and Eve in the Garden of Eden.

Birds flying off

into the distance,

elephants and giraffe and a

lot of religious iconography.

The second panel is where

it starts to become

more interesting.

The deadly sins start to infuse

their way into the painting.

There's overpopulation,

there's debauchery and excess.

And the last panel, which

is the most nightmarish one,

especially from a young child's

perspective, is this twisted,

decayed, burnt landscape.

A paradise that has been

degraded and destroyed.

Man may be

unwittingly changing the world's

climate through the waste

products of its civilization...

The burning of coal, oil and

wood is releasing carbon dioxide

into the atmosphere.

The greenhouse effect has been

detected and it is changing

our climate now.

Guess where the

temperature goes?

It goes up.

Climate change is

already in our backyards.

It's official. 2012 was the

hottest year in the...

warmest year around the globe

warmest year on record.

It is these activities

that drove mankind

out of the Garden of Eden.

- Hi, how are you?

- Ah, Mr. DiCaprio.

Pleasure, pleasure.

Great to, great

pleasure to see you.


We can move this.

This can be adjusted.

Oh wow, this

is for height control.


- Like this, like this.

- For shorter leaders

and taller leaders.

What specific message do you

think is the most important?

Climate change is

coming much, much faster.

We have seen such, uh,

extraordinary extreme weather


If you consider this

vastness of this universe,

this Planet Earth is

just a small boat.

If this boat is sinking, then

I think we will have to all

sink together.

I know that he has been a

very committed and effective

environmentalist and that is

why I really count on your

leadership and vision.

Please welcome

newly appointed United Nations

Messenger of Peace,

Mr. Leonardo DiCaprio.

Thank you

Mr. Secretary General,

Your Excellencies...

I feel incredibly honored

that they chose me to be

the United Nations Messenger

of Peace on climate change.

I stand before

you, not as an expert,

I want to do everything I can

to learn more about this issue.

See for myself exactly what's

going on and what can be done.

But it all kinda seems

beyond our control.

As an actor,

I pretend for a living.

I play fictitious characters

often solving fictitious


I believe that mankind has

looked at climate change

in that same way.

We keep getting inundated with

catastrophic news about the

environment every single day,

and the problem seems to be

getting worse and

worse and worse.

Try to have a conversation with

anyone about climate change,

people just tune out.

If the U.N. really knew

how I feel,

how pessimistic I am about our

future, I mean, to be honest,

they may have picked

the wrong guy.

Hundreds of

thousands took to the streets

of New York today demonstrating

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Mark Monroe


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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Before the Flood" STANDS4 LLC, 2022. Web. 19 Jan. 2022. <>.

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