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The Island President

Star rating: 5.5 of 6
2012 | 101 min | Recommended min. age: 14 y

A film about one man’s mission to save his nation and perhaps the planet, “The Island President” by Jon Shenk is the story of Mohamed Nasheed. The man who brought democracy to the Maldives after thirty years of despotic rule, now faces the greatest challenge of any political leader. The literal survival of his nation, his people and his territory. As one of the most low-lying nations of the world, a rise in sea level of just 3 feet would submerge the 1,200 islands of the Maldives and render them uninhabitable.

The film follows his first year in office, culminating in his trip to the Copenhagen Climate Conference in 2009. Here we glimpse a rare insight to the highest level of political horse-trading that occurs at such international summits. Nasheed reveals his strategy with unusual openness: leveraging the understated position of the Maldives as a tool to win the media and its power, and to call for closer ties with other developing countries to overcome blockades. When the hope of a common written agreement fades, Nasheed holds a poignant speech that leads to an settlement. Despite the modest size of his state, Mohamed Nasheed has become one of the leading international voices in the urgent fight against climate change.

A classic David and Goliath tale, “The Island President” captures Nasheed’s battle to stop global warming – to save his country.

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