1,069 of 1,392 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Go See It. Go. Right Now.
Ok, let me get this straight. They made a documentary about Al Gore giving a lecture? About global warming? Okay, I'm already asleep. Snore. Yawn. Why don't I just stay home and save the money I would spend to take a nap.
All kidding aside, if you know anything about Al Gore, you know this is a subject he is extremely committed to and passionate about. Very...
Published on May 30, 2006 by thornhillatthemovies.com
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars 'An Inconvenient Truth' (2006): Review
AIT is a documentary that throws a lot of information at you in quick succession, and it mostly succeeds at packaging that info into easily digestible sizes. However, the main parts of the doc (other than the interesting little autobiographical bits about Gore) are little more than a glorified taped college lecture. What I mean by what’s bad about this is that AIT...
Published 9 months ago by T. Bollinger
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1,069 of 1,392 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Go See It. Go. Right Now.,
All kidding aside, if you know anything about Al Gore, you know this is a subject he is extremely committed to and passionate about. Very passionate. And after five years of some of the worst, most harmful environmental policy to ever come out of Washington, DC, there is no better time for "An Inconvenient Truth".
I know many consider Gore to be less than a captivating speaker. But in "An Inconvenient Truth" he comes across as a different man because he is so passionate and committed to the subject of global warming, he comes across as a different man. Informed, knowledgeable, conversational and persuasive, if he were like this during the election, there would be no Florida Recount in our history books. Okay, so that didn't happen. But the result is that Gore, much like Clinton and Carter, are trying to do something with their status to help better the world. Gore has long been an environmental advocate and it shows. He knows the facts inside and out; people have provided him with statistics, graphs, charts and more, and he uses them in this presentation.
As Gore states, he has given the lecture more than a thousand times around the globe. Because of this, he is extremely comfortable addressing large audiences, giving them a lot of scientific research to digest. Remarkably, he makes it easy to understand, pointing out key facts, walking us through some of the more difficult to understand ideas and problems. He also knows when the audience needs a break and interjects humor here and there. At one point, he shows a spoof of an educational film animated by the people at "The Simpsons". At others, he makes fun of himself and his political ambitions and woes.
Davis Guggenheim, the filmmaker, has apparently presented Gore's lecture virtually intact. As Gore moves around on a dais, clicking for the next slide, he makes persuasive points. But he also reaches a couple of key points. When this happens, the filmmakers smartly pull back from the lecture, giving us a portrait of a few key moments in Gore's life. The argument he makes in his lecture is persuasive, intelligent and well thought out, but because we learn more about the man making the presentation, these points have even more resonance. Not only do these moments give us more details about Gore, they also provide a respite from the scientific data, allowing us to absorb what we have learned.
At one point, Gore states that the data is irrefutable and it appears to be. Remarkably, the filmmakers show footage of various people attacking Gore, or claiming the data he is presenting is not based in fact. Yet, we can see it for ourselves, right in front of us. And I am sure Gore could easily provide a bibliography of resources for us to check out all of the facts he uses. What would drive some of these people to attack Gore and this data? Some of the clips are from Gore's days as a Senator and Vice President, so some of that can be contributed to political parties trying to one-up each other. But currently, Gore does not hold political office, yet the current administration seems intent on giving every break to the worst polluters in the country, allowing them to make as much money as possible while they pollute and pollute and pollute. Gore shows a slide about this argument. Apparently, there is the thought good environmental policy will impact the economy. How do these same people explain the relationship between Toyota, Honda, Ford and GM? Toyota and Honda manufacture vehicles with far better gas mileage than their competitors and are much more successful because of it. An argument Gore makes very convincingly.
Thankfully, Gore stays away from political bias. More or less. A couple of times, he makes funny remarks about his failed run for the presidency, or he makes a pointed comment about the current administration, but by and large his comments are directed at us and what we should do to save our planet. The film isn't void of bias, but there could certainly have been a lot more. The fact the filmmaker and Gore showed some restraint makes his presentation even more persuasive.
The film ends with a series of `calls to action' as the credits begin. Frankly, these aren't needed because Gore's arguments are so convincing. But they are effective. As one call to action states "Urge everyone you know to see this film." Well, folks, that's what I am doing. Go and see this film. We need to do something before it is too late to do anything. Hopefully, this film will one day be viewed as a historical document of the beginning of a great change and not as a horror film.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Will we take the time to be informed?,
This review is from: An Inconvenient Truth (DVD)The environmental movement as it was previously known has been placed in the out of sight out of mind mentality. This film needs to be seen by all who want to be open minded enough to view the evidence and see for oneself what is or is not occuring. It is irresponsible to comment on global warming with conviction unless this film is included in ones basis of knowledge about the subject. Decide for yourself, see this side of history and you will be informed and make the choice that you feel is best!!!!! I am confident it will empower you to make the judgement of what will be our future.
Please put aside any previous notions about Al Gore/politics/activists and see the film for your information to decide what choices you will make about your future?
660 of 894 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring and captivating,
The entire audience clapped at the end of "An Inconvenient Truth".
It is all too rare to see people act out of idealism and ethics. Those qualities shine throughout this film -- Al Gore has noticed a problem -- a BIG problem -- and he has learned about it, and is trying to solve it. The "news" media gives us little 15-second soundbites instead of news and arguments, believing that we, the American public, are too stupid to comprehend any non-trivial ideas. Gore, on the other hand, clearly has faith in us to UNDERSTAND, to do the right thing, and, above all, to CARE.
26 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Trying to be a good steward of the earth...,
This review is from: An Inconvenient Truth (DVD)I thought the documentary was great. I still have questions - like why were there next to no hurricanes in 2006 and why are the oceans not boiling due to the current CO2 levels in the atmosphere? Although I believe the information presented in the film to be largely true, I also believe the earth to be at least as complex as the human body - created just as wonderfully and intricately. That said there are just unknowns about how the earth copes with stress (or doesn't cope) as there are with how the body heals (or doesn't).
So I will set my questions aside for this reason - what does it hurt to be a good steward of our planet? It takes a few extra minutes to put my recycling in the bin. Even if global warming is a hoax, who wants landfills? I do a little more research when I buy a car. But isn't that smart anyway? And doesn't it benefit me financially to drive a car with higher gas mileage/lower emissions? I spend an extra 10 cents on yogurt manufactured by a company that offsets 100% of its CO2 emissions. But that yogurt also has no artificial sweeteners and no chemicals - isn't that better for me anyway? I walk my kids to school. Hello, heard of childhood obesity? I reuse plastic grocery bags (and paper ones too, for that matter). Isn't this just being frugal, thrifty and smart? I buy "green" electricity from my power company - don't I want to step outside and breathe good, non-polluted air?
The message here is that it is NOT DIFFICULT and NOT A HARDHSIP to be an environmentalist - or don't call yourself an environmentalist - say you are protecting the earth, helping to create a clean home for your family or being a steward of our greatest natural resource - the pale blue dot. Each of us can do little things that take less time cumulatively than getting a haircut every 6 weeks, cost us very little and are directly beneficial. In this age of instant gratification, it makes no sense to me why someone would not want the immediate effects of earth stewardship - they are practical and instantly beneficial. Even if you don't believe the long-term gloom and doom, don't you want the immediate good parts of the environmental movement - less landfill, sweet-smelling air, exercise, decreased fuel costs, and health? Shame on you if you don't.
22 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great footage of glaciers calving, receding, crevassing,
In his dry, matter-of-fact manner, Gore takes on the Bush administration for a deliberate misinformation campaign to confuse people about global warming. I doubt that anyone would even attempt to refute Gore after seeing all the evidence he has presented so clearly. If we continue our present deadly inaction to address these concerns, we can no longer plead innocence after seeing this movie.
Gore's passionate concern about the state of our planet comes through as he shares moments in his personal life that have shaped his commitment to saving our ozone layer. He makes a compelling case, also, that we must end all warfare. I literally basked in his words, loving every minute of this movie as Gore said everything that I've been saying for years.
If I had the means, I would cross the Arctic and Antarctic the way Gore did, to see for myself the extent of global warming on the icecaps. The footage he shares of glaciers calving, receding, crevassing, and other manners of disappearing, satisfied me completely. No questions left - we are in a serious planetary crisis with global warming and we must do something about it.
I support Gore fully in creating the necessary political will to take all the steps he suggests for people to change the way we live to minimize global warming. - Ariel Ky
22 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Every American has a duty to watch this movie,
I have read articles saying the movie is amazing, and some articles saying it stretches the truth, etc. But regardless it is incredibly eye-opening.
27 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Inconvenient Reality,
The graphics and reasoning of his presentations are first rate. The reliance on a broad range of converging scientific studies is impressive. And contrary to early reviews of this movie in other venues, the scenes of Gore trapsing through airports, undergoing security scans, working nights in his hotel rooms, and following up on peripheral critiques of global warming helped bring home the perserverance and dedication of this man.
A quick scan of negative reviews of this movie suggests strongly that the authors must have been in the lavatory when the segments they criticized were on screen. See this movie! It's well organized, thoughtfully presented, and thorough.
27 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very good presentation,
"The Ice Caps are melting!! Sea levels will rise!!" Really? Such drivel shows a real lack of scientific understanding. Ice caps are after all, floating ice. Not a land mass. To see how water levels will rise try this little scientific experiment. Take a bowl. Fill it half full of water. Add a lot of ice cubes or a block of ice. Mark the level of the water once that is done. Let it melt. Note the water level has not risen because the ice melted. Duh!!
Now, if that reviewer actually saw the movie, he would have seen the same experiment reinacted on the screen. The problem isn't the ice that's already in the oceans melting. The problem is, when that ice melts, the 'dam' or barrier to the land-based ice is removed and that land-based ice then flows into the ocean raising sea level.
Do the above experiment and then add a handfull of ice and watch the water level rise.
The facts that Mr. Gore presents are strong and well thought out. I do hope that people listen and collectivelly try to change. However, that won't be the case. People seem to need a disaster to incite action. The threat of terrorism was just as real before 9/11 as it was after, but it took that disaster to incite action and in some cases overreaction.
The movie is a great documentary even if you don't believe in the subject. It is well thought out, humorous in just the right places, and makes its point clearly. This film reinforces in my mind that entertainment can also be educational.
If you don't believe the science presented here, then present the facts and citations, but the reality of the situation is that I believe humanity will have to be dealt a catastrophe greater than 10 'New Orleans' type disasters in order to rid our addiction to fossel fuels and the production of greenhouse gasses.
Oh well, it's only our children who loose. What do we care? We'll all be dead by then.... if we're lucky.
39 of 53 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thank God, Al Gore is Persistent and Passionate About This Subject,
This review is from: An Inconvenient Truth (DVD)If you haven't seen this movie, you should, and I'm not just recommending* the movie because I like Al Gore and tend to lean toward the left politically. I'm recommending this movie because I care about the environment and there is actual evidence to back up what Al Gore has been saying for years: Global warming does exist.
Speaking about global warming is clearly Al Gore's forte. While some of his campaign speeches back in the 2000 Presidential election had been trite and boring, you can tell global warming is a topic Gore sincerely believes in and cares about because he speaks very passionately about the topic.
In addition to sharing his extensive knowledge about global warming in "An Inconvenient Truth", Gore's very candid about the disappointments and low times in his life; however, he reiterates that he refuses to give into bitterness and despair. Gore's perseverance and determination is something we can all apply to our lives in some way. For example, after the whole voting fiasco in Florida and the Supreme Court's decision in favor of George W. Bush, Gore states: "That was a hard blow, but what do you do? You make the best of it." Gore did make the best of the situation and started giving his slide shows about global warming again.
Thank God, Gore is persistent and continues to speak out about the global warming crisis. He remarks that he thought this story would be "compelling enough to get Congress to act", that it is "frustrating that people don't understand that we're the worst contributor" and that he looks for "meaningful signs we're going to change" while clip after clip is shown of him being shot down through the years as he has appeared before Congress for hearings on global warming. There's even a clip of George Bush, Sr. remarking, "This guy wants us up to our necks in owls...this guy is crazy" while another politician declares "This is the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the American people."
I don't understand how people can say global warming doesn't exist. The signs are everywhere. Carbon dioxide levels are at the highest they have ever been; glaciers all over the world are disappearing; tornadoes, typhoons, floods and hurricanes are rampant and showing up in places where they never have before, and animals and insects, affected by all of the climate changes are migrating to places at unnatural times or dying off because their natural habitat no longer exists.
During the closing credits of An Inconvenient Truth, "I Need to Wake Up" by Melissa Etheridge -- a really inspiring, motivating song, by the way --plays and different ways we can change the way we live flash across the screen. A few that jumped out at me are:
Use Mass Transit
Vote for Leaders Who Pledge to Solve This Crisis
If They [the leaders] Don't Listen, Run for Congress
Reduce Our Dependence on Foreign Oil
Pray people will find the strength to change
*A recommendation for the movie was first featured on my blog and has been edited for publication here.
34 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A scientist's view of what it is and what it isn't,
1) The film is an appeal to viewers' intellect. A film like this is rare. We live in anti-intellectual times, where sound-bites rule the day, violence is glorified in the media, concentrated greed trumps civility and common sense, and steroid-fueled atheletes are considered "heroes." The popular movie that appeals to the altruistic thinking person, with an analytic, fact-finding mind, is a rarity, so this is indeed welcome. More of this sort of thing, please!
2) The movie is clearly a self-aggrandizing, self-indulgent attempt by Gore to improve his image and consolidate his power. It may not be partisan (in the Republican vs. Democrat sense) but the people who say this isn't partisan need to unclog their carotid arteries a little. Well, that sounds more negative than I intended because I like Gore and I love the fact he's dedicated to increasing public awareness of an important topic. There's no doubt that Gore has emphasized environmental issues for many years. But notice that the focus is on Gore. The key scientists are rarely actually named, especially if they are living, though they are the real heroes. Sure, Gore names a few but not the ones I would have expected. Long standing activists and writers are also omitted, such as Paul and Anne Erlich, Barry Commoner, Amory Lovins, etc., etc. Many of you left the movie enamored of Gore. But please take a deeper look at the science, the issue and the politician. The science and the issue are hugely important. I'm more interested in seeing politicians use their power to address environmental issues than in seeing environmental issues co-opted to increase the power of specific lobbies and individuals.
3) It is a nice layman's intro to global warming. It is much deeper than the sound-bite garbage that you see on TV. If you are the rare person who is really interested in the science underlying the issue, then learn more about the topic, minus the agendas of Al Gore and Hollywood. Become familiar, for instance, with the work of Ralph Cicerone, one of the founders of atmospheric chemistry and current president of the National Academy of Science. He's a great scientist, and a good guy (and add points for the fact he's married to a great sensory scientist... ok, that's my issue). Take 5 minutes online to find and read Cicerone's (July 21, 2005) CURRENT STATE OF CLIMATE SCIENCE: RECENT STUDIES FROM THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES. Then, take half an hour or so to listen to an interview with Cicerone from NASonline (using RealPlayer). You'll hear one of America's greatest scientists outlining the facts, the scientific debates, and the remaining questions. You can find a few right-wing crackpots who take pot shots at Cicerone, but he's the real deal.
4) It is pro-science. This is a key point in this time of anti-scientific thinking. The film has the potential to increase viewers' interest in science and scientific thinking. Whether or not you accept the science as it is presented in the film, this is an important point. Don't stop here, as this film is the finger pointing at science, not science per se. If you don't believe the theories and facts presented here, then you can bring your own science and facts to the table. Putting an emphasis on theory, facts, and data is pro science. If you can't handle this, go back to watching football, getting fat on your couch, and voting for Bush, or whatever. You won't be alone, so smile.
5) It is a beautiful film with striking graphics. If, like me, you love a good graph or informative picture, take a look at Kosslyn's new book on making graphs. Kosslyn is the world's greatest expert on imagery, and is a cognitive and neural scientist extraordinaire. Telling a story in graphs and pictures is hugely important. Kudos to the filmmakers for the quality of their graphics.
6) The movie is an advertisement for Apple computer and Apple products. Perhaps this is not obvious. But Apple technology is everywhere in the film, and also the accompanying book. The computers are displayed prominently, and the Keynote program is at the heart of Gore's presentation. Gore is on Apple's board of directors. You can learn more about Apple's link to the film/book/Gore at Apple's website. I'm a big fan of Apple and its innovative technologies, so I'm not complaining. But don't miss the fact that you are being lulled into buying Apple products.
7) It is strong motivation do something important in life; to make changes that contribute to the greater good. And the film is strong motivation to commit yourself to the future, but to live your life as if there will be no tomorrow. Want to read a great book on conscious, effective activism? Read Andrew Beath's "Consciousness in Action: The Power of Beauty, Love and Courage in a Violent Time"
8) The Bush adminsitration is a noteworthy part of the global warming story, but this is not emphasized by Gore. Sure, there are some allusions to Bush's shortsightedness. But the disturbing fact is that the Bush administration has been attempting to silence the global warming story. Gore didn't mention this, for political reasons, I'm sure. The administration has been doing more to silence scientists than any previous administration, apparently. Don't believe me? NASAs top climate scientist, Jim Hansen, is but one person who discusses this fact. For instance, watch Revkin's interview with Hansen available online at the New York Times website. When pressured by the NYT, Bush admitted to forcing scientists to shift their public positions on global warming. Bush publicly denies the importance of the issue. His link to fossil fuel dollars is one reason for this, to be sure. Bush is the enemy. That's a fact. The book that seems to clarify the political issues is the one I'm reading at the moment: "The Republican War on Science", by Chris Mooney.
9) There's a book and website that accompany the movie. If you liked the movie, you'll also like the book. (see reviews)
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An Inconvenient Truth by Davis Guggenheim (DVD - 2006)