It’s no secret; documentaries are my favorite genre of movies, especially those that address environmental issues in an inspiring and empowering way. Dirt! is no exception. I watched this movie a second time (the first time was about 2 years ago), because I knew I wanted to share about it in an articulate way.
Dirt! explores the importance of soil to the entire well-being of the planet, people included. If the Earth is Gaia, a living entity unto itself, then dirt is the skin of this beautiful creature. And, hello, we are part of this living entity, made up of the same elements that are in the soil. Anything that harms the soil, harms us.
I learned many amazing things from this vibrant movie (with cute little micro-organism animations, to boot), like the ills of monocrops and artificial fertilizers, how desertification is caused and how conventional farming methods have led to poverty rather than feeding the world as they have proclaimed. Artificial fertilizers, for example, used in conventional monocrop farms, have a nitrogen run-off that flows into streams, rivers and ultimately coastal waters, causing excessive algae bloom and decomposition which depletes oxygen from the oceans and ends up killing the marine life.
While Dirt! brings much needed awareness as to how certain human practices, such as the use of artificial fertilizers, are not sustainable to the health of the planet and its people, it also provides inspiration and solutions, as every good documentary should.