Demain: the Feel-Good Eco-Movie


The 41st edition of the French Oscars Cesar 2016 awarded Melanie Laurent and Cyril Dion for their environmental documentary Demain (“Tomorrow”). The documentary visits every corner of the earth to meet with men and women who are taking concrete, positive action for the planet. A movie that conveys a real glimmer of hope, and has already won over 700,000 viewers.


Demain is imbued with a glimmer of hope from start to finish. Released last December, this documentary by actress Mélanie Laurent and eco-activist Cyril Dion takes an optimistic view of our planet’s future. How so? Thanks to solutions devised by ordinary citizens intent on preserving the Earth.

“A breath of fresh air”

“Deeply moving” and “magnificent” are just a few of the many superlatives used by its 700,000 viewers to describe the documentary. Because at the end of the two-hour film, you come out with the idea that a radiant, sustainable future is still possible, if we make the effort to imitate people who have already come up with their own solutions. The French newspaper Le Monde even talks of “a societal phenomenon”: the little movie on which no one wanted to take a chance attracted some 10,000 Kisskissbankers, who invested the tidy sum of €450,000 in it. Breaking all the classic rules of film-making, the documentary is captivating more and more audiences each week…

Examples of concrete solutions

And yet the film’s opening sends chills down the spine. It introduces an apocalyptic note with the presentation of a study by the science magazine Nature, announcing the possible end of mankind by 2100. This information inspired a group of six young French film-makers – including Mélanie Laurent – to travel the world in order to show as many people as possible the positive initiatives that could be replicated in the near future. For each of the five subjects covered by the documentary – agriculture, energy, economics, democracy and education – the directors interviewed experts and met with everyday people, as well as elected officials and visionary entrepreneurs, who have successfully implemented highly practical solutions to fight global warming. We are first taken to the organic farms that proliferated in Detroit after the economic crisis that devastated the city. We then go on a detour to a town in the UK, Todmorden: the birthplace of the Incredible Edible scheme, providing free vegetable gardens that anyone can use. Lastly, in San Francisco, we see how the city manages to recycle 80% of its waste: a green strategy has also been adopted in Copenhagen.

The book and website dedicated to Demain encourage everyone to take action against global warming, both individually and collectively.

Still showing, the movie continues to attract new followers

So the camera tours San Francisco, where it observes the effectiveness of the city’s recycling; Copenhagen, where the aim is to achieve energy autonomy; Switzerland, where SME managers have launched their own currency; Iceland, where they are trying to reinvent democracy; and the list goes on. In short, we see a whole range of solutions shown in an informative way, each offering a means of mobilizing large numbers of people to protect the future of our planet. In addition, the book and website dedicated to Demain encourage everyone to take action against global warming, both individually and collectively.

Photo © Demain (Mars Distribution)