Amazon’s Black Summer Fires Doco Unpacks All the Climate Warnings We Missed

Amazon’s Black Summer Fires Doco Unpacks All the Climate Warnings We Missed

There’s a new feature-length documentary that takes an unflinching look at the deadly Australian bushfires of 2019-2020, which became known as ‘Black Summer’. Burning is an Amazon original doco and will be released on Prime Video in late November. It looks absolutely devastating.

Burning comes to us via Academy and Emmy Award-winning Australian filmmaker Eva Orner, who is probably best known for Chasing Asylum, the story of Australia’s cruel, inhumane treatment of asylum seekers and refugees. Burning was produced by Propagate and Amazon Studios and executive produced by Cate Blanchett’s Dirty Films.

Burning has also been awarded the inaugural Sydney Film Festival Sustainable Future Award which is awarded to a narrative or documentary film that deepens our knowledge and awareness of the impact of the global climate emergency.

Amazon Black Summer
Image: Amazon

What We Can Expect From Amazon’s Black Summer Doco

Through the trailer, Amazon sends us right back to the 2019-2020 Black Summer that saw many of us overwhelmed by severe heat and the inescapable thick orange sky.

Fuelled by climate change, the nation’s hottest and driest summer ever recorded resulted in bushfires that burned over 59 million acres, killed and injured an estimated three billion animals and affected millions of Australians.

Burning is an exploration of what happened as told from the perspective of victims of the fires, activists and scientists.

If there’s one phrase from the trailer that highlights the direction Burning will take, it’s: “The greatest tragedy was that we saw it coming”.

The preceding years of drought plays directly into the ongoing hot-button issue of climate change, with the film drawing comparisons between government inaction and media perceptions and a bushfire season that would wreak an extraordinary level of destruction.

We can also expect Amazon’s Burning to pose questions about how we move forward as a nation to ensure we don’t have another Black Summer.

Burning will premiere at the Sydney Film Festival on November 6, 2021, and will launch globally on Amazon Prime Video on November 26.