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.


Acharya S said...

Al Gore has turned into a really gorgeous man.

Thanks for a great review of a very important work.

Amos Keppler said...

You're welcome. Thank you. The words «important work» about AIT has crossed my mind, too. More than once.

I can't help comparing him to the sitting president (what a waste of human flesh).

I don't believe the world would have changed enough if Al had been president, but it WOULD have been different.

Rigmor said...

Mr. Hooten: "God gave us oil! He gave it to us! How can God's gift be bad?"
Tommy Corn: "I don't know. He gave you a brain too and you messed that up pretty damn good."

(this is a quote from a film, actually. I suppose this is my way of saying that the environment matters, you are raising important issues here but it is sooo hard to get the message out to the right people!)