The Seeds of Vandana Shiva (2023) Film Review


The Seeds of Vandana Shiva

“Vandana Shiva is the reason why there are no GMO foods in India”.

A powerful statement that’s also hard to believe considering social globalization, but a very relevant one nonetheless, and one that’s stated early on in the documentary The Seeds of Vandana Shiva. One would think what does she have that elevates her presence in the everyday struggle of ecological activism. And the answer seems to rest on her wit, her drive, and the capacity to put every other argument to shame by the use of science and sheer will.

The Seeds of Vandana Shiva is a one-woman show that brings to the table the subject of the ecological activism specialist Vandana Shiva lives by. However, it’s not a 1-hour commercial about everything Shiva has done to protect her country and society. It’s a deconstruction of Shiva herself, as she grew up in a country where women tend to be seen as lesser social elements. Early in her life, she showed a certain prominence for activism, but Shiva was also an average mother and wife who had to face lawmakers as her family structure suffered from a a blow. In a few words, she was able to overcome the foundations and rules, but this wouldn’t be her greatest battle.

Seeds are only a small part of Shiva’s “catalog”. Her reach goes beyond the research she’s founded herself to preserve the very roots of agriculture. In that broader spectrum she’s touched the sensibilities of corporations, executives, journalists, and anyone who dares to speak against the fundamentalist aspect of her cause. She’s not well-liked in some parts of the planet. Shiva’s courage nevertheless, allows her to keep a smile on her face as she confidently points to finger to lesser elements, because she understands there’s a higher power at play that needs to be defeated. As the documentary ultimately confirms, seeds are essential to Shiva’s activism, but seeds of doubt are also the weapon her enemies use to discredit her. In this part of the discussion, is where we should make a decision about what to observe, support, and ultimately consume. The documentary is a profile on Shiva, but it’s also informative enough to make you draw your own conclusions, as you should always do.

Shiva’s capacity to speak and represent activism as something necessary and argumentative, made her a key figure in the cause. But Shiva would go beyond and create a movement called eco-feminism, which sounds specific and “trendy”, but in her words it sounds essential. The documentary is a chronicle about Shiva’s identity and her effect in activist movements throughout the years. Her optimism is contagious. Her smile a magnet. Shiva is a force of nature that uses her intellectual energy to make a crucial statement in current times when the powers that be need to make a change sooner than later. Every country wishes they had their own figure of activism like India has Vandana Shiva. However, her words are so noble and wise, it’s natural to consider her as a representative of a worldwide cause that we need to observe and support.

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Federico Furzan

Film critic. Lover of all things horror. Member of the OFCS. RT Approved Critic.

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