The Hungry Tide (2011) MIFF Film Review


At what point do you give up and just leave? Kiribati is a small country, a small group of low-lying islands which are threatened by the rising tides as a result of climate change.

Fed up with all the current debate on an Emissions Trading Scheme and having a strong sense of climate change fatigue prevalent, I was not looking forward to watching this documentary. I knew that whatever came from it, it would not be positive. I was right – it was not positive. Even over the time of filming, Kiribati was continuing to have its sea walls destroyed by the waves and the final scenes of a town during the annual king tide saw the water invading further into people’s homes than previously.

The hero of this film is Maria Tiimon, a Kiribati woman who lives in Australia and is active in pursuing action from the world community to change policies and attitudes to save her country and other countries in the same position. But, having little effect in Copenhagen at the Climate Change Conference and dealing with family illness and separation from her country, even this strong and positive woman finds it difficult to stay positive.

The film leaves the audience with little hope that these islands will be saved, and we are left to wonder what will happen not only to the people of these countries, but to their culture and history.

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