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An Inconvenient Truth

Halloween, Friday the 13th, step aside. America has a new kind of horror film--the global-warming documentary An Inconvenient Truth. It features nothing supernatural, absolutely no blood but plenty of Gore--Al Gore, that is--and should scare you silly.


An Inconvenient Truth follows Al Gore, as he lectures on the causes and dangers of global warming. The former Vice President presents slides, charts, facts and his own observations as he makes his case on how we must change our ways and face up to this very real threat. Gore repeatedly calls it a moral imperative that we stop altering our atmosphere with greenhouse gasses, specifically CO2. But the real horrors come from seeing the projections if we don"t do anything to curb global warming: Polar ice caps will melt and raise ocean levels by 20 feet--submerging Miami and most of New York City--while temperatures will rise creating more intense hurricanes. There's no need for any fancy research to prove this point. Satellite pictures from 20 years past and the same images from the present are enough to convince anyone. Gore does offer hope that if we take action we could avert a global disaster--but like anyone with an addiction, we have to admit we have a problem before we can start down the path to recovery.


Inconvenient Truth is also partly about Al Gore. He continually calls on his boyhood memories of growing up on the family farm and explains how he became interested in the subject of CO2 emissions and global warming while a college student in the "60s. He talks about life changing events involving his sister and his son. He gets some laughs at his own expense when he references the 2000 election and speaks authoritatively throughout the film. The Al Gore in this film is passionate and convincing without having to smooch his wife in public.


Davis Guggenheim--best known for being TV director (Deadwood, 24, Alias), as well as Elisabeth Shue's husband--guides us right away into Gore's presentation. In the opening moments of the film, we follow Gore from the back and side, and it's almost a full minute before we see his face. It"s an effective trick--and no mean feat since most of us want to forget the 2000 election fiasco, and Gore with it. The different threads of the film are handled seamlessly, as we see Gore traveling around the world, while the amazing editing team (Javier Alvarez, Jay Lash Cassidy, and Dan Swietlik) assembles footage not only from Gore's global warming presentation but also all that is behind it--including bringing out an Al Gore the public may not know about.

Bottom Line rated this film 4 stars.