Thursday, October 26, 2006

An Inconvenient Truth - an excited review

«You look at that river, gently flowing by, you notice the leaves, rustling with the wind, you hear the birds, you hear the tree-frogs, in the distance you hear a cow, you feel the grass, the mud gives a little bit on the river bank, its quiet, its peaceful, and all of a sudden, its a gear-shift inside you, and its like taking a deep breath and going... oh yeah - I forgot about this.»


From the very first view of the river and Al Gore’s voice the clarity and passion rise in us, and don’t let go.

An Inconvenient Truth is on the surface about Global Warming, but to me it’s just as much about waking up, and stay awake, taking a good, hard look around you, and smell the stinking coffee.

We experience one man’s passion juxtaposed with the no longer so cold chill from the Artic and Antarctica. This is the man once described as «wooden». But the change is more than skin deep. It is as if he has found his true calling, somewhat free from Washington DC’s dank corridors.

This is a systematic, thorough investigation of Global Warming, leaving far fewer unturned stones than any other before it. This is a great movie. The important theme makes that fact no less, no more true. The man is cautious, in a way, speaking in a somewhat low voice. In a way his voice is low-keyed, and so is the film, and its truth is still shouted like thunder across the world, across every corner of current human society.

We see India, the San Francisco Bay, Ground Zero, the Netherlands and several other coastal areas drown in the rising sea. Al Gore, the great man is making his case, An Inconvenient Truth, the great film is making its case. I knew most of the facts before I watched the film, but it still moved me. Like a soft glove in the face, like a hammer to the head, making my heart beat faster, making my breath quicken. I felt the Quickening, the fire of the human soul ignited.

We experience how Al’s basically optimistic view of the world is challenged, by indifferent politicians, by an unmoved and shrugging world. How baffled and downright stunned he is by this, and other insane workings of current human society. Al is still a believer in current mankind, how common sense will prevail against horrible odds. And we believe that, too, at least while watching the movie.

This is by far the best documentary that is ever made. It’s not instantly apparent why this is so, but it grabs hold of us from the very first moment and never let go. One hundred minutes vanished like the snapping of fingers, and we wanted more.

Every man, woman and child on this Earth should be forced to watch this movie repeatedly for at least twenty-four hours uninterrupted, and they shouldn’t be allowed sustenance while doing so. Fasting is good for the soul, they say.

After that they should be forced at gunpoint back into the theater…

I can’t praise it enough, really. It begins slowly, and builds from there, into a crescendo of mind and thought and soul. As stated, I don’t agree with everything Al says. I agree with his facts, his observations, but not with his philosophy or conclusions, not even with his basic, fundamental principle that civilization should be saved. In other words: I don’t think he goes far enough. But I still admire and respect him. In the most cynical parts of our hearts, he continues to speak to the hope in us all. I’m not certain that is a good thing, at least not completely. But I listen to his passion, and his fire, and that is Human, that is Life.

And fire and shadow both are yet again rekindled in my gut.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Cutting the pain

An increasing number of Danish girls cut themselves as a response to an ever-stronger social pressure. According to Jyllands-Posten «Cutting», or self-mutilation has now reached the same levels as anorexia among teenage girls. Knives, broken glass, razorblades or whatever doing the job, are used. The girls cutting themselves, unable or unwilling to keep up with the demands society put on them, wear long sleeves or walk around with sweatbands around the wrists and a haunted look in their eyes, but very few notice, as usual.

This is merely yet another sign of the ruthlessness of modern society, the callous social pressure to make it and be successful both in school and society as a whole.

Western society has yet to reach Japanese levels (where super capitalism and the super school are long since established and the suicide rate among men is the highest in the world), but we’re getting there.

  Self-harm cases increasing

Thursday, October 05, 2006

October


Early October northern Europe, sixty degrees north…

Grass and leaves are still green, at a time where the first snow used to come twenty years ago. Some leaves have just started to wither, but most of them are still green and even fresh. Days are hot. Nights are colder, but not much more so than a chilly summer evening could be twenty years ago. I still walk around in t-shirts, and I’m comfortable. It doesn’t take that much walking before I start sweating.

The last true winter in these parts was twenty years ago. There have been minor bouts of cold and snow since then, but increasingly less of it. Seasons are fading into something new and totally unpredictable.

The future isn’t coming, isn’t some obscure point somewhere ahead. It’s been here for a long time already. The future is now.