New Extinction Rebellion film asks how normal was normal

As we tentatively begin to emerge from lockdown, climate change activism group Extinction Rebellion asks us to evaluate what we are returning to

One of the enduring narratives of the lockdowns that have taken place around the world is how good they have been for the planet. While socially isolating has often been very difficult for individuals and families, and terrible for the economy, it has been great for the natural world: gifting us cleaner air and the opportunity to notice the birdsong that is often drowned out by transport noise.

This has led to questions over the opportunities that the pandemic offers us to restart life with a different attitude towards our environment. A new film from Extinction Rebellion tackles this question head on: highlighting the bizarreness of our ‘normal’ world when everything is stripped away.

The film was shot in Sydney during lockdown by Milos Mlynarik. There have been countless films shot in cities that have been rendered empty by coronavirus since the pandemic began and all of them share an eerie sense of unease, but this is enhanced here by the use of sound design, which highlights the trappings of our capitalist existence. This is contrasted with birdsong at the start and end of the film.

It’s a powerful message and no doubt one of several that will be sent to the public from climate change groups, as they attempt to seize the moments we have to make longer term, positive changes as a result of the pandemic.

Creatives: Marco Mollo, Luke O’Driscoll
DP, Colour grading: Milos Mlynarik
Edit, Sound design: Tim Arnold AV