THE FOREST FOR THE TREES
Lucy Walker / Scotland, France, United States / 2022
A breathtaking documentary in which humans dramatically demonstrate and passionately argue that plants have as much by way of brainpower as they do beauty, and how that changes everything about how we see the world.
We are on the verge of a new understanding of the creative power of nature. Imagination, evolution, consciousness – these concepts are undergoing a metamorphosis. Filmmaking offers new ways to experience the changing relationship we have with life and nature- and particularly with plants.
We combine passionate, electrifying interviews with the world’s most riveting experts with stunning, minimalist photography of mind-blowing experiments with plants. We reveal the hidden brilliance of the plant world as never seen before. It’s beautiful, the undeniable evidence of intelligence without having a brain.
We look for a formal simplicity, exquisite minimalism. The interviews are brilliantly lit, the backdrops clean and spacious. We are in a beautiful headspace of bright clear thought. The drama is in the ideas, the implications, and it’s all lit up in the faces of our guides. Literally illuminated and illuminating. Our story is both rigorously scientific and gorgeous. Science is sexy.
These interviews need to be shot impeccably and consistently, with elevated, unifying style. The formal constraint and restrained elegance is essential to balance the wildness of the ideas we are discussing. If we sound wild and look wild, we’ll just be a bunch of out of control hippies. So, we could be in a forest setting. Or even against a green screen. Or a white cyclorama could create a heightened laboratory feel.
We are thrilled to have an exceptionally talented Director of Photography, Enrique Chediak, who in addition to his superb cinematography skills has a tremendous passion for this subject.
The experiments are shot using top production values and innovative methods, opening up the science for a broad audience. We dramatize the amazing behaviours of plants, leaving no doubt that they are anything but “vegetables”. For the first time we glimpse the hidden visual world all around us, a layer of life we usually can’t see because it’s happening at the wrong scale, or speed, or spectrum to be visible to our eyes.
Can trees communicate with us? And if they can, are we able to understand them? To decipher their message? To respond? Would they use perfumes, clicking sounds, waves of energy, invisible molecules, electricity to interact with us? What would they tell us if we were able to understand them? What teachings could we learn from these ancient sentinels of the world?
If we think we’re in charge,
we’re not. What is really going on?
Watch, Listen and Find out