Burning – Toronto 2021

Burning. Courtesy of TIFF.

Eva Orner follows the devastating Australian wildfires in Burning and how the government is not willing to address the crisis at hand.

The year 2020 brought a whole new meaning to the world being on fire. Heck, 2019 also saw several fires breakout in California. Here in the states, wind conditions brought hazy conditions to states that were nowhere near some of the recent fires. While the US was dealing with fires out west, Australia’s bushfires became known as “Black Summer” for 2019-20. Make no mistake that climate change is helping to cause this crisis. It’ll only get worse before it begins to get better if at all. It feels like every year becomes known as the hottest year on record. In Australia, they had not just their hottest summer but their driest summer on record. As a result, some 48 million acres were burned and three billion animals lost their lives.

What filmmaker Eva Orner does is tell the story through the activists, scientists, and victims. Unfortunately, Australian prime minister Scott Morrison declined to be interviewed. What a shame. This is the first Australian documentary to launch as an Amazon original and it couldn’t be more eye-opening. Or devastating, too, for that matter.

The film notes how many acres have burned in both Australia and the United States just before the credits. If this film doesn’t help get a conversation started, I don’t know what will. I mean, look at New York with all the flooding following Hurricane Ida. If you don’t think that climate change is a crisis, I have some news for you. The world is both burning and sinking. Our towns along the coast are going to be destroyed by the rising seas. Fires are going to keep getting worse and will only destroy more land, homes, and animals. We cannot ignore this film.

Burning is a horrifying but must-watch documentary and is sure to start a conversation about the climate crisis. Well, maybe. These films keep coming out and nothing seems to happen…


Burning holds its world premiere during the 2021 Toronto International Film Festival in the TIFF Docs program. Amazon Prime Video will launch later this year.

Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.