As wildfires continue to ravage the West Coast, breaking horrifying record after horrifying record — more than 3.2 million acres have been destroyed so far — I keep thinking about Ferngully: The Last Rainforest. To those who grew up watching the 1992 animated musical, the apocalyptic images of scorching orange flames consuming vibrant landscapes and giving way to gray, ashy devastation are eerily familiar. They echo the destruction wrought by Hexxus, the pollution specter villain voiced with menacing glee by Tim Curry. Unfortunately, our current dire situation won’t be fixed by a spiky-haired fairy wielding a magical seed.
Even more prescient was the idea of young women leading the charge against the destructive forces of climate change, a prophecy we’re seeing fulfilled in leaders like 17-year-old Greta Thunberg.
In 2020, the movie is a caution against complacency, a call to arms for the next generation, but also an apology.