An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power
Just over a decade after Davis Guggenheim’s documentary detailing Al Gore’s rather extreme warnings regarding global warming and its subsequent effect on our Earth, Bonni Cohen and Jon Shenk’s An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power continues to shed light on a topic which arguably could not be more relevant today. However, what is evident in this sequel is the nuance with which the documentary lays out its argument. This is not to say that Al Gore is not his same impassioned and driven individual self (complete with emotional manipulation), but the film manages to strike a balance with strong evidence for the case of global warming (which isn’t a hoax Mr President) whilst also taking into consideration other vital arguments against the move away from, say, fossil fuels and oil as sources of energy.
A scene around the half-way mark shows Al Gore – after travelling to India – discussing with various Indian diplomats about their reluctance to sign the Paris Climate Agreement. On the one hand, it is a nation’s responsibility to maintain their progressive position on tackling climate change; on the other, India as victim to both cultural and economic imperialism is also demonstrated. India, as a developing country, relies much more than the West on non-renewable energy sources to provide for its people and this, albeit unfortunate, is an indisputable fact.
An Inconvenient Sequel should play a large role in bringing the issue of climate change back into popular culture, and its more inclusive tone and style – compared to the intellectualism and academic prose in Guggenheim’s film – as well as the lower (and clearer) use of graphs and statistics, will be a welcomed reform from the previous documentary.
Overall, this sequel is an improvement. It has a high production value, and thus is both aesthetically and sonically pleasing, but Gore’s ultimate cynicism and message hasn’t changed much. He certainly has reason for his cynicism – and perhaps we should take it as genuine as opposed to critiquing it – but his solutions of zero fossil fuel emissions, still, seem like improbable ventures. Nonetheless, the message is powerful and delivered masterfully with just the right dosage of manipulative behaviour. There seems to be a certain neglect for this vital world issue and right now, with America joining the laughable membership of non-signatories of the Paris Agreement, this documentary could not be more purposeful.
An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power is released nationwide on 18th August 2017.
Watch the trailer for An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power here: