The Hidden Message in “Don’t Look Up”

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Inez Goering, Staff Writer, Sports Editor

CAUTION: SPOILER ALERT!

 

Picture this apocalyptic scenario: a comet is on a direct collision path with the Earth and the government’s greediness Fs everyone. Adam McKay’s take on Armageddon left us frustrated, laughing, and crying all in the span of two hours and twenty-five minutes.

The movie first attracted a large audience with the extensive list of well known cast members: Jennifer Lawrence, Leonardo DiCaprio, Meryl Streep, Cate Blanchett, Jonah Hill, Tyler Perry, Rob Morgan, Ariana Grande, Timothée Chalamet, Kid Cudi and more.

Jennifer Lawrence’s character, a take on climate change aficionado Greta Thunberg, breaks the news of the world ending to the fictional Trump-like president, Meryl Streep. Streep scoffs and asks Lawrence to pretend it is not true (mocking our government’s reluctance to accept climate change).

As the movie goes on, more parallels are drawn to our society and we begin to realize the allegory. The comet represents climate change and the world is going to end unless immediate action is taken. But of course, the president and her Chief of Staff (who happens to be her son… nepotism?) along with Mark Rylance’s knock-off Mark Zuckerberg, have come up with a plan: let the comet hit Earth and mine it for valuable diamonds. In other words, the rich will become “even more disgustingly rich!” -Kate Dibiasky, astronomer who discovered the comet.

Obviously, this plan fails. In the moment of realization that the comet will indeed collide with Earth, the very people who attempted to take the comet’s diamonds enact their escape plan. The politicians and the rich hop on a space shuttle to the nearest Earth-like planet while the rest of humankind perishes in a fiery extinction. An atypical Hollywood ending. 

The message of the film was shocking. If we do not take the necessary steps to reverse climate change, we may also have an atypical Hollywood ending. The burdening factors in the movie were all too similar to those of our society. With political dysfunction and carelessness, we could very possibly meet the end of our existence.

The moral of the story: look up. Look up and see the comet for yourself. Use your own eyes and ears to establish what is true versus what you are being told. Our future depends on it, so just look up.