One of the earliest films to seriously deal with the topic of air pollution.
Having recently just seen THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW, I was reminded of this movie, which when made in 1970, was prescient. In a time when the first Earth Day was still in the planning stages, the film was a dramatization of the possibility of man-made environmental disaster, at a time when very few people were acknowledging the need for any environmental protection at all. While I saw it 34 years ago when it originally aired, I have never forgotten it.
Regrettably, the issues involved seem to be the same: the unwillingness of the corporate / business community to place the health and safety of society above their profits. I regard this movie as a harbinger of environmental cinema, in the same way that Rachel Carson's SILENT SPRING made people sit up and take notice of an issue that could no longer be safely ignored. This film, made without the use of today's special effects, dramatically pointed out the potential that could result from unchecked industrial pollution.
For those who disparaged THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW as alarmist and unrealistic, this would be a good film to view, bearing in mind that the 'conventional wisdom' of the time when this was made was much the same, i.e. the world was so big and and a little pollution didn't really matter. In hindsight, A CLEAR AND PRESENT DANGER looks positively tame. No one today would look at this film and and label it as fear-mongering.
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