Some say that global warming is merely a myth and how the fluctuating global temperatures are of normal standard. However, others believe that within the duration of 50 years, the average global temperature has increased at a faster rate than usual, and as experts confirm; will continue to accelerate. Whether or not you’re a believer of global warming; there have been multiple documentaries to prove that this theory is seldom problematic. One of the main films that showcased this theory in it’s entirety was 2006 doco film, An Inconvenient Truth; starring former Vice President of the United States and well-known environmentalist, Al Gore. The documentary received exceptional reviews from critics, won an Oscar and Nobel Peace Prize due to it’s powerful message of saving the planet from pollutive catastrophes.
Now in the year 2017, Gore has decided to release a follow-up to the film known as An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power, where we can see what environmental work has been done over the past ten years. But will this sequel be an inconvenient disaster or will Al Gore bring an even more empowering awareness to his viewers?
The first half of the film, directed by Jon Shenk and Bonni Cohen, consists of Gore’s campaigns, activities and discussions regarding global warming for years since this sequel’s predecessor. Even ten years on, his sheer grit and determination to increase the awareness against climate change is still as evident as it was in the first film which is great to see. He’s been evangelizing this theory through his infamous slideshow to group teach-ins, climate educators and advocates in hopes of recruiting a global network consisting of them. You could see this part of the film as blatantly glorifying Gore and adding more ego points to his calibre, but all are done for a wider purpose; and that is to persuade the viewer to be active in their own community regarding climate change; because the earth’s unpredictable temperatures are becoming more crucial by the day.
Filmed during the lead-up to the Paris Agreement in Dec 2015, there is an agreement (that current President of United States, Donald Trump, is wanting to pull the U.S from the agreement) within the global UN to act on climate change except for India; seeing as they already proposed a few plans to build coal plants. So the most significant part in the film for me was Gore’s countless negotiations to get India off coal power, which he manages to do successfully in the last minute by making an agreement with California’s biggest solar-panel company to sell solar panels to India with no interest.
It’s fair to say that we can see a lot of proactive deeds during this film, although climate change is still evident and there is still a lot of work to be done (as seen on the visuals Gore presented regarding the ice sheets melting in Greenland, and climate-change affected areas such as the Philippines) in terms of bringing a global union together in order to prevent the temperatures from drastically rising or decreasing. Despite the numerous setbacks given to this theory, it’s still thriving- and this sequel was done to give the theory that extra push towards a definite change from our fellow citizens.
I would add that the directing could have focused on new concepts for climate change since a lot of the facts that were presented had already been shown in its predecessor, some of the film was a reminder of what we already know as opposed what we more we should know. Nevertheless, let’s hope that the Climate Reality Project, and climate change awareness continues to be preached for many years to come and not only because of Al Gore’s profound influence.
An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power, out in NZ cinemas 21st August 2017.