Ever since I heard about this film I wanted to watch it. So last night, I decided to do just that. What I realized was that, I was not prepared for what was in store.
Without giving too much away from the film I learned that:
1. Everything comes at a price.
2. The world is more interconnected than we can imagine. i.e: that out of sight out of mind landfill somewhere in a poor country is giving off gases that contribute to global warming and well the effects are felt everywhere, namely, temperature in July 2015 was again, record breaking. And 2015 is bound to beat 2014 being the hottest year on recorded history.
In the documentary, the filmmaker takes us beyond the shop fronts and advertisements that the average consumers are acquainted with and exposes the ugly side of the fashion industry, which after the oil industry is the most pollutant industry in the world.
Not only that, the fashion industry is also female labour intensive. The clothing that you are wearing right now, whether it be from China, India, Bangladesh, Vietnam or Cambodia – was likely from the hands of female garment workers working at a low $3/day (the statistic given in the film) and it’s sad (because I honestly can’t think of what $3 is…other than maybe a bottle of water? Or maybe a few apples?) watching the top execs of top brands dismissing this exploitive act with ‘it’s probably better than the alternative, if they are working for dismal amounts.’
Only 5% of clothes are manufactured in the United States now, 95% is outsourced.
The film is both eyes opening and heartbreaking (not just for someone who loves fashion). I would never look at a piece of garment the same again – nor would I want to throw anything out – because the image in my head now is that grotesquely high landfill rotting away somewhere in the world. I’d rather wear my clothes until I get holes in them or they’re no longer wearable – then I’d mend them myself.
Essentially, the film made me realize I no longer want to be a part of the consumption pattern that’s pushed upon us and that even if I’m an insignificant statistic in the larger scheme of things. I’ll sleep better at night.