Project Description

Cover for the book, Before the Flood. Features a picture of a tree in a field with half of it being lush and green, and the other half dark and grey.

Before the Flood

2016 · PG · 1h 35m


If you could know the truth about the threat of climate change — would you want to know? Before the Flood, presented by National Geographic, features Leonardo DiCaprio on a journey as a United Nations Messenger of Peace, traveling to five continents and the Arctic to witness climate change firsthand. He goes on expeditions with scientists uncovering the reality of climate change and meets with political leaders fighting against inaction. He also discovers a calculated disinformation campaign orchestrated by powerful special interests working to confuse the public about the urgency of the growing climate crisis. With unprecedented access to thought leaders around the world, DiCaprio searches for hope in a rising tide of catastrophic news.

From Academy Award-winning filmmaker Fisher Stevens and Academy Award-winning actor, environmental activist and U.N. Messenger of Peace Leonardo DiCaprio, Before the Flood presents a riveting account of the dramatic changes now occurring around the world due to climate change, as well as the actions we as individuals and as a society can take to prevent the disruption of life on our planet.

Beyond the steps we can take as individuals, the film urges viewers to push their elected officials in supporting the use of alternative energy sources such as solar and wind power. “We need everyone to demand bold action from their political leaders and to elect representatives who have their best interests at heart, not the interests of corporations to perpetuate a cycle of greed and destruction,” says DiCaprio. “This documentary shows how interconnected the fate of all humanity is — but also the power we all possess as individuals to build a better future for our planet.”

About the Filmmakers

Before the Flood was produced by National Geographic and Ratpac Documentary Films, and directed by James Packer. Find out more about the film at


“This is one of many documentaries about climate change; many aren’t much fun, but with DiCaprio at its center, this one offers crucial, current information, as well as a measure of hope. Actor/producer Fisher Stevens, who won an Oscar for his powerful dolphin documentary The Cove, directs Before the Flood, beginning with a reference to Bosch’s painting The Garden of Earthly Delights and then traveling all over the world. DiCaprio starts out with a pessimistic outlook, but he keeps an open mind as he meets and talks with politicians, specialists, and scientists. He finds that, while problems persist, there are also many solutions that have begun to be implemented. Overall, it’s one of the most universal and possibly most helpful and hopeful of the recent climate change documentaries.” – Editorial Review, “Before the Flood Review.” Common Sense Media. 21 Nov 2016

“The release of Leonardo DiCaprio’s new film Before the Flood, near the end of a US election in which climate change has gone all but unmentioned, is to be celebrated.  As is the fact that it has been made available free online, and within the first 2 days of its release, has already been viewed 3.5 million times, as well as trending on Twitter.  Ah, the power of celebrity.  It powerfully reminds the world of the urgency around climate change, which can only be a good thing.” – Rob Hopkins. “Leonardo DiCaprio’s ‘Before the Flood’: A Review.” Post Carbon Institute. 2 Nov 2016

“Mr DiCaprio presents not only an extremely convincing argument for global warming, but provides the viewer with an opportunity to examine one’s own conscience. The ability for us to solve the problem is apparent, but entangled within a political and corrupt corporate world of fossil fuel conglomerates whose only priority is to maximize their profits. The numerous credentialed panel of professionals DiCaprio interviews throughout the film gives the climate change issue a sense of unparalleled genuineness. This is a great documentary. Watch it!” – Luke, Amazon

“Must watch. Yes, critics call it a vanity project but if all celebrities were so “vain” as to care about the place we live in and actually do something about it, let there be more vanity projects like this. It’s a powerful reminder as to how far advanced this problem is and yet it offers glimpses of hope and possible solutions. And yes, while we can all recycle, eat less or no beef (I prefer no meat at all), boycott companies that use palm oil in their products and put solar on our roofs, that’s not going to stop the problem. It has to be dealt with on a bigger scale, by carbon tax and by government incentives for renewable energy.” – Kristina Scabbagh, Amazon

“Both enlightening and urging for action, carefully weaving DiCaprio’s investigation around the globe prior to his speech at the UN, with a beautiful beginning comparing our planet and its history with what was depicted in The Garden of Earthly Delights by Hieronymus Bosch. I’ll try to do my very best to spread the message and bring as many people as possible to this and other sources of information, so action begins to happen sooner rather than later, for us and our future generations. Thanks Leo, it’s a great accomplishment!” – Leo Z., Amazon


Cover for the book, Before the Flood. Features a picture of a tree in a field with half of it being lush and green, and the other half dark and grey.

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