Review: Planet of the Humans


©2020 C. Henry Martens and Kari Carlisle

The apocalypse observers, C. Henry Martens and Kari Carlisle, both watched the documentary, Planet of the Humans. Here’s what they had to say…

From the desk of C. Henry Martens:

There has been controversy…

Not so surprising with a film sporting Michael Moore’s name on it.

But first, it seemed to me that Michael Moore took a back seat in the actual filming of this docu-film. This, to me, seems to be the director’s film. The director being Jeff Gibbs.

This seems a relevant point in that the information in the film, and there is plenty of information, is so important that Michael Moore lent his credibility/notoriety to the film even though it is Mr. Gibbs effort that made the work. And I think this is important. The fact that a famous person of international importance would lend his name, would place his reputation, on a work because of the importance of the information contained.

This is a critical film of our human efforts to recognize the impact we are having on our environment… but even more… it is a critical vehicle to recognize how our efforts have failed in many ways. The film is an eye-opening study of how, even in the environmental action community, we have a blind eye to the realities of the results in our efforts.

And therein lies the controversy.

Because environmental groups have been so upset with the film that they have vilified it for being critical of their efforts. For some amount of time the film was even removed from Youtube due to the controversies.

But You tube is where I watched it… for free. It seems that the film was released to be available for free due to the times we are in with the pandemic, even though it was originally intended to be released in theaters. Moore and Gibbs thought it was important enough to get the information out… that they decided to forego the normal channels that would have resulted in a profit to them. Another point in their favor, in my opinion.

Click HERE to watch the full movie.

So… to the film itself.

The information in the film is given in fast bursts. The concern for environmental declines established, efforts to alleviate problems, explanations of processes, and the results… both those intended and those that have been less effective than expected.

As usual the facts used are well researched, although a couple may be outdated as technology has progressed. This dated material itself part of the controversy, but understandable as technologies change fast and this film may have been in the process for years.

Writing this for Apocalypse Observer, I have to say that the film supports the contention that humans are making so many mistakes, even in efforts to repair our environmental mistakes, that we are practically standing still. Instead of repairing the Earth, our solutions are most often just digging different holes to be filled later by those that come after us.

And the most controversial point made by the film, is that the environmental movements that are so concerned with the human habitat… are filled with corruption and politically correct thinking, feel good solutions of little real impact… instead of a cognizance of reality.

Because cognizance of reality is the only way to be really effective.

I recommend this film to anyone, but especially to those with concern over the survivability of our little blue and green orb. Please walk into it with a mind open to learning and thinking, and not jumping to automatic defense of what you believed environmentalism was doing in the service of humankind.

This is an uncomfortable film of great value.

From the desk of Kari Carlisle:

Well, shit, we are screwed. Stick your fingers in your ears and keep crying, “La, la, la, la, la, la, la….”  Everything is going to be okay. Yes, we are experiencing global warming. Yes, there are some crooked corporations out there. But we’re going to keep on fighting for alternative energy and reverse the damage we’ve done.


In my youth, I was profoundly impacted by the television commercial that depicted an American Indian man with a tear falling down his face because of the garbage on the side of the road. Having internalized the message, I not only never throw garbage out my car window, I make a habit of picking up garbage and putting it where it belongs: in a garbage bin.

<heavy sigh> Throughout my life, I carefully avoided thinking too hard about where garbage goes. The garbage truck picks it up and takes it away, never to deface the beautiful land again. But, of course, inevitably, I didn’t go thought life without seeing trash dumps and hearing horror stories of toxic waste, plastics, microplastics, and the effects of pollution on ecosystems. I could pick up trash all day, every day, and “properly” dispose of it, but it still EXISTS. The real problem isn’t people throwing trash where it doesn’t belong, it’s the constant creation of stuff that becomes trash. It’s consumerism.

When I heard Michael Moore made a documentary against green energy, I was surprised. Surely, Michael Moore is for green energy, right? Not being terribly interested in what Michael Moore has to say, I put Planet of the Humans in my mental garbage bin. I left my head in the sand and continued to be pleased with whatever bits of progress were being made in wind and solar energy, even while thoughts about the hidden costs of these sources of energy niggled my mind. Don’t think too hard. Just be happy we’re making progress.

Then, there it was in my inbox. Planet of the Humans.

I couldn’t watch it in one sitting. No, it wasn’t too long; it was too much. Spoiler: The world is going to hell in a handbasket woven by the very “environmentalists” lobbying for alternative energy.

While Moore has put his name on this film as its executive producer, Planet of the Humans is really a product of documentarian Jeff Gibbs. He carefully leads the viewer from where they are likely to start, as proponents of green energy. He guides us on a path, the same path he started on, trying to understand alternative energy. But the path quickly heads downhill as we discover how not green green energy really is, and then we plummet over a cliff as we learn that the very pillars of the environmental movement are found to be completely reliant on the fossil fuels we’re trying to avoid.

Like picking up trash on the side of the road, green energy may not be the salvation we were hoping for. As with every systemic problem, it boils down to following the money (or the power). If someone stands to gain, it is ultimately corrupt.

If there’s no such thing as green, sustainable energy, at least not yet, what is the solution?

Trash: create less.

Energy: use less.

How do we do that? That’s the tricky part. We have to be less, i.e. there are way too many of us demanding more and more stuff, more and more energy. While Planet of the Humans nudges us carefully in the direction of population control as the ultimate solution, that is where it leaves us. If you think environmental collapse is uncomfortable, can you imagine a sequel on population control?

There’s no doubt our population has exploded over the last 200 years, and we are now experiencing the long, slow burn apocalypse. Instead of adapting to our environment, we are transforming the environment to suit our lifestyles, and there’s the rub, my friends. To create less trash and use less energy, we all must take a good hard look at how we live and how we consume. Don’t think that just because you installed solar panels on the roof of your McMansion with the two Priuses in the garage that you’re doing your part.

Everything you do has an impact, and everything you consume came from somewhere. It will make your brain hurt, but if you take a few minutes to trace back everything you use to its source, you will realize that we are all part of the problem, and so we must all be part of the solution.

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2 thoughts on “Review: Planet of the Humans

  1. The earth resources are finite. Nature renews some of the resources but not as fast as 8 billion people use them. The obvious solution is smaller population. Entropy is using high level energy to do work and discarding it at a chaos level unusable heat. Lifestyles require more resources depending on standard of living. The higher the standard of living the less humans can live on earth. Most developed nations know this and have fewer children. They are not replacing the population. But undeveloped cultures believe you need to make as many children as possible to support you in old age.
    The U.S. population has increased from 200 million in 1964 to 330 million today most all of the increase due to immigration. The government looks at the increase as more taxpayers and workers as do the lobbyists for corporations etc.

    Do not vote for politicians who think saving lives is more important than saving freedom and liberty.

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