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The Test Tube with David Suzuki

A playful look at global overpopulation and food shortages, inviting visitors to share what they would do if they had one minute to spare.

A small project from the National Film Board of Canada, one of the most successful and progressive organizations operating in the world of digital documentary filmmaking. Lasting just a few minutes, The Test Tube with David Suzuki takes a playful look at global overpopulation and food shortages. The visitor is “placed” in a test tube as a bacterium.

It starts with a simple question: “We know you’re busy, but if you could find an extra minute right now, what would you do?”

Those who answer are addressed by the Canadian scientist and environmental activist David Suzuki. Since 1971, Suzuki has been dedicating himself to combating the consequences of climate change – in both his scientific work and his activities as a radio and television personality. While Suzuki explains his analogy of a test tube slowly filling with bacteria for our increasingly overpopulated planet, we see the screen gradually fill with digital bacteria. Clicking on individual bacteria reveals messages on Twitter from other people who answered the initial question. It turns out we are not as unique as we might like to think.

For IDFA DocLab, Test Tube was screened live as part of 3 Stories of Time & Place.

Project details

Year of development :2010
Created by:National Film Board of Canada

Available formats

Official website

http://testtube.nfb.ca/