Donald Trump could have saved An Inconvenient Sequel. If Al Gore is the John Wayne of climate activism, as directors Bonni Cohen and John Shenk would have you believe, then Trump is Lee Marvin (AKA Bad M.F). This time it’s personal, as they say. As it turns out, we get very little Truth To Power, and a whole lot of what we already know.
Al Gore is getting a posse together to spread the word about climate change. If you’re interested, he has some graphs to show you, which, to be fair, are as cinematic as graphs can be. Time is running out though – the moulins in Greenland are channeling water down to the bedrock at a growing pace, threatening to wash the country away like tissue paper. And the 9/11 Memorial was flooded; Al Gore told you ten years ago that that would happen, and you didn’t believe him.
Of course, the world hasn’t been idle. Last year, all of the nations got together in Paris and agreed to do something about carbon emissions. India was touch and go for a bit, having just now begun to profit from fossil fuels, but then in rides Al Gore – in suit, tie and cowboy boots – with a massive discount on solar panels. Pow wow, the Paris Agreement is struck. For now, anyway – Trump is pulling the USA out of the accord, which must burn a little.
But Al Gore and his movie are sticking to the issues, like the Syrian civil war, the resulting migrant crisis, and its possible connections to a crippling drought before the fighting even started. That’s a pretty good point, whether it’s man-made global warming or not. So why is that all the information they give you? What happened to the graphs? And is it just Syria? There’s martial law in the Philippines, and so-called Islamic State in the south. Does that relate at all to Typhoon Haiyan sweeping out six thousand lives in 2013 and costing $3 billion? They don’t say, but they do have Al Gore comforting a survivor three years after the fact. What a guy.
Well, maybe you’re not that into learning stuff about things. Maybe you prefer aerial shots of glaciers crumbling like titanic cookies. Not that you need this film for either. No, this film is for those who want Al Gore quoting Martin Luther King, Al Gore and his dog at the ranch, Al Gore with his staff on smart phones, saving the world one media opportunity at a time.
If Al can learn anything from the current President, apart from how to be entertaining, it’s this: when you don’t like the way things are going, don’t make a campaign video. Make a ruckus.
Review Score: TWO STARS (OUT OF FIVE)
An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power hits cinemas on Thursday, 10th August.