What Happened To Monday? The Film That Makes Us Ask Some Serious Questions About Population Growth
As I sit here and type this I have just finished watching 'What Happened to Monday' on Netflix. What started off as a distraction from completing a job application has turned into a think piece for this blog (see who says that procrastination is always a bad thing ;) )
The film focusses on seven siblings living in 2043 a time overpopulation has caused a worldwide crisis causing the "child Allocation Bureau' to operate under a strict one child policy, with the slogan 'one child, one planet' in order to control population growth and ensure that resources are sufficient to support the current population.
And whilst the measures to control the population are extreme and what we like to think unrealistic because no one would ever like to believe that our governments would approve such, the film doesn't stray to far off from reality. After all it wasn't too long ago that China operated under a strict one child policy, which led to a number of infant deaths particularly of baby girls as baby boys took preference. Although unlike Cayman's government that took extreme measures to eliminate siblings, the consequences of such a regime in reality remain similar causing the film to raise some interesting points regarding overpopulation and the future of our planet.
Whilst on the surface the ending seems happy, that the sacrifice of the five of the original seven meant that we were able to exist in a world where siblings were no longer in hiding or worse sentenced to death, it definitely leaves the viewer with a somewhat unsettling feeling. As the camera pans out we see and the crying intensifies, which leads us to question whether the 'triumph' achieved by the sisters was really for the best or whether the selfish notion of one family has out the world at risk.
In the year that the film is set in, our population level has reached almost 10 billion which isn't far off our current level of 7.5 billion and considering that the population increases by an average of 840,000 people a year, a population of 10 billion doesn't seem implausible.
It is no secret that overpopulation is a growing issue. Whilst many the average number of children in the developing countries continues to decrease on average as people marry and start families later, birth rates are continuing to increase especially in developing areas where access to family planning may be limited. To out this into perspective, if you go on the World o Meter (http://www.worldometers.info) you can see live information regarding births, deaths and other factors that affect our population growth.
Population growth is tricky subject because no one should be denied the right to bring a child into the world, but at what point do we stop and think about the effect we are having on the planet. Is it enough that when we have children we educate them on the importance of preserving the natural world and teach them to be considerate or do we need to do more? When will our population be too much and are we capable of doing anything about that isn't considered an extreme measure.
What do you guys think and if you have watched the film, what are your thoughts on it?