Sierra's July/August 2006 Let's Talk selection: An Inconvenient Truth
A film by Davis Guggenheim Review by Jennifer Hattam
What it's about
Who knew a PowerPoint presentation could be so, well, powerful? In this film version of his oft-given speeches on global warming, former vice president Al Gore makes line graphs funny and shocking as he explains how carbon dioxide emissions are leading up to a deadly "collision between our civilization and the earth." Though much of the news is dire, Gore deftly uses the metaphor of Earth as seen from space to show that our planet is small enough for us both to harm and save.
Where to get it An Inconvenient Truth began premiering in theaters May 24. Look for showtimes at a cinema near you.
About the filmmaker
Davis Guggenheim has directed episodes for many television series, including Alias, Deadwood, ER, NYPD Blue, Party of Five, The Shield, and 24. An Inconvenient Truth is his second feature film.
At the beginning of the film, Gore reflects on the natural landscape that means the most to him. What place is most important to you? How do your experiences there affect your activism or life choices?
In a May 9 interview, Grist writer David Roberts asked Gore about the most effective way to provoke action on global warming: "Do you scare people or give them hope?" Which tactic(s) do you think work best, and how could environmentalists better implement them?
What do you think about Gore driving and flying all over the world to give his PowerPoint presentation? Could his message be just as effective if delivered in a way that didn't contribute to the problem?
When talking about his family's tobacco farm and his sister's death from lung cancer, Gore says that there are "times you wish you had connected the dots more quickly." Have you ever had a similar revelation about how your actions connect to the broader world? If so, what did you do about it?
Watch the movie trailer, learn more about climate science, and calculate your personal contribution to global warming on the film's Web site.
Read Grist's interview with "accidental movie star" Gore.