An Inconvenient Movie

I'd been looking forward to seeing the Al Gore documentary "An Inconvenient Truth". Heard good things about it. Rented it from Netflix about two weeks ago, and it had been sitting around unwatched until last night.

Kinda wished it had stayed that way.

Well, maybe not. I'm glad I saw it to see what folks have been talking about. Of course I don't understand the praise. And BTW, I'm not talking politics here at all. Purely filmmaking.

This movie was a SNOOZE FEST. As boring of a film as I can honestly recall. My wife actually wanted to turn it off - but I rarely will do that - if ever. Once I start a movie I finish it.

If you haven't seen the film it shows Al Gore giving his "slide show" (his words, not mine) in front of a live audience. Then, inner cut throughout segments are these little "transitional pieces" of Al walking through airports, driving his car, sitting at his desk, etc. - all with voice over from Al. Is this supposed to be interesting or even remotely entertaining?

The subject of global warming is undoubtedly interesting. But could they have presented it in a more boring way? Come on. This is a MOVIE. Please make it visually interesting and at least partially entertaining. To me the best documentaries do just that. While I do not agree with much of what Michael Moore has to say, I do find him a good storyteller and filmmaker. He's stuff is at the very least presented in an entertaining way. Or take Morgan Spurlock's "Supersize Me". Again, a very engaging and interesting documentary that also entertained. Of course my favorite documentary filmmaker is Errol Morris. ALL of his films are very well done on every level. They are MOVIES. Anyone ever thinking of making a documentary should go a rent one of Errol's films ("The Fog of War", "Mr. Death", "The Thin Blue Line", etc.).

"An Inconvenient Truth" was just dull. I mean any Discovery Channel doc is better. Imagine listening to your 8th grade science teacher give a lecture and that's what this movie feels like.

My only guess as to why this film is getting lots of attention are the following:

1. Al Gore
2. The subject matter
3. Politics

Let's take them one at a time:

1. Al Gore should be renamed Al Bore. How can a man who has been in politics his entire life be such a boring and uninspiring public speaker? Now I really know why he lost the presidential race in 2000. At least Bush has a personality whether you agree with his politics or not. But Hollywood and the American left can't let go of his loss. And they want to honor him in any way they can. This is ironic of course. Remember oh, 20 years ago or so? Tipper Gore? Remember the recording industry's vitriol towards her (for the "censorship" labels on CDs) and indirectly at Al? Funny how things turn around. While I do think his intentions for this project are VERY NOBLE, I again just think it was a very failed attempt as a film (the director's fault).

2. Global warming is real. I do not doubt this at all. It's a good topic for a doc. And, I think this is a great thing to discuss and get solved. But, this movie does not do that. Sure, it shows lots of stuff that has happened over time - and it projects things that might happen in the future. But what this film does not do is tell us WHAT WE CAN DO TO HELP. In the ending credits it lists a handful of elementary things we can do to stop or reduce global warming. This list could have been created by a kindergarten kid. This is a huge filmmaking flaw on the director's part. Tell us what's happened; what's possibly going to happen if we don't fix things; and then tell us HOW to fix the problems (or at least what they think we should do).

3. This is a political hot potato, and really I don't think it should be. But it is nonetheless. So my belief is Hollywood will reward this film (and has been cheer leading it along the way) at the Oscars. This film in NO WAY SHAPE OR FORM deserves to be an Oscar contender. But it's a film that has political clout - especially on the left. And as most folks know Hollywood is very left leaning. And BTW, I have no problem with this at all. For me take politics completely out of the picture - this is just not a good movie. And should not be up for Oscar contention.

The best thing about this movie is that is has reignited the debate on global warming and hopefully our government and others around the world (it's not just us remember) will take action. This summer Al Gore is putting on a global concert to raise awareness on the topic - supposedly U2 will head line. Sounds kinda like a "Live Aid" concert. I'm sure every band will want to lend their talents to the event. I think this is a good idea.

My only hope is they keep Al behind the curtain so the show can somewhat entertaining.

-Blake


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Who Am I?

I'm a filmmaker who's produced & directed five feature films including the comedy SPILT MILK (available on iTunes), the new horror/thriller PHOBIA (on iTunes) and the action/thiller KILLING DOWN (which you can buy or rent at pretty much all the usual places).

I also created the Streamy and Webby award-winning web series PINK, which to date has been viewed online around 10 MILLION times at places like YouTube, Hulu, Koldcast and TheWB.com. And speaking of TheWB.com, I also produced and directed an online thriller for them called EXPOSED. It was released summer 2010. And most recently I created a new online sci-fi series called CONTINUUM, which is part of the online indie TV network JTS.tv - Just The Story and NOW available via VOD through indie platform Distrify.

Oh, and I don't shoot weddings. Thanks for asking though.

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