As someone who considers herself very much in the loop when it comes to the depiction of global warming in the popular culture, I was pleasantly surprised -- actually, more like totally stunned -- when I innocently took my kids to see the animated hit movie, "Ice Age: The Meltdown" last night. I had no idea the whole premise of the film is about global warming.
"The flood is real and it's coming fast," warns one of the cute and cuddly characters as the glaciers melt all around them. The plot thickens as the animals realize they must seek higher ground or face extinction due to the rising sea levels (remind you of any polar bears you know?)
Although the movie is geared for kids, it's quite terrifying in places. The deafening roar of cracking ice sheets, vultures swooping down in anticipation of dead animals, and the fear of inevitable horrific environmental changes all ring a little too true for comfort. And that's a good thing -- this is no time to feel comfortable about this pressing issue.
I predict the impact of this wildly popular family film will be significant. There is no better way to educate the public than doing it without them knowing (though I doubt that was producer 20th Century Fox's intention). But whatever the intent, thank you Fox for following up "The Day After Tomorrow" with another blockbuster built around the theme of global warming.
My favorite line of the new film comes when Manny the Mammoth (Ray Romano) says, "We need to let go of the past so we can have a future." Hear, hear. You tell 'em, Manny!