by Ken B.
DISCLAIMER: Because I have similar political/environmental views to the ones presented here, this review may be a little bit biased (I tried to remain neutral as much as possible). I imagine all reviews of this movie (or those like it) are a little bit biased one way or the other.
“I’m Al Gore, I used to be the next President of the United States of America” is the statement Al Gore uses to begin his presentation of a global warming awareness slideshow, which he says he’s given over a thousand times. An Inconvenient Truth is an excellent documentary, and its truly quite frightening in the way it presents its facts, and the inevitable conclusions. But the fact Al Gore presents this is the film’s blessing and curse. Gore is a natural speaker, and is an appealing host. However, some political folk who don’t care much for Gore or trying to be convinced over global warming’s existence (for the few who don’t know, these are typically the same people both times) may turn away from the film completely.
That’s really a shame.
Why? The sheer importance I’ve always felt about taking a stand against the track we’ve made about global warming is very high, and this movie shares that view. That however, I must stress, is not the only reason I like this movie. This is top documentary filmmaking here. It has a point, sets out to do it, and gives evidence as to why it assumes that point. An Inconvenient Truth is directed by Davis Guggenheim, who would go on to direct Waiting for Superman (Rating: 2.5 Stars). Guggenheim is capable of making very professional and glossy products, so it’s appealing to the eye.
Most of the documentary’s 96 minute runtime is devoted to the slideshow presentation which Gore has presented around the world, relaying the extremely dangerous path that we, as a global society, have taken to harm the earth. There is no debate over the extent of this issue in the scientific industry. There were no major dissents to how scientists presented reports on the subject to one another over the past several years. How one chooses to take this information, however, leads to a debate in the general public.
Occasionally, An Inconvenient Truth will step away from the main feature and diverge into an Al Gore story, one of them being the 2000 election, of course. These, while occasionally interesting, can really drag out the movie. Sometimes, it even felt like an afterthought.
Truth be told, everyone who’s wanted to see this movie probably already has, and that “wanted to see” should be everyone. Whether you go in to realize the full extent of the damage global warming has caused and will cause, or you wish to go in as a skeptic to the issue, there is something in this premise that draws most in. If, however, you are not in any way interested in this issue or taking a position, I must assume one of two things. One, you’re not a political person. As the Oscar-nominated actress Julianne Moore once said (I don’t know exactly where and when, though), “When someone says, ‘I’m not political,’ I feel like what they’re saying is ‘I only care about myself. In my bathtub. Me and my bathtub is what I care about.’” I feel that is true, and I thought I was the only person that did. Or maybe, two, you just don’t care about global warming. You’re kind of in the same place, aren’t you?