I’ve just seen Al Gore, Bonni Cohen and Jon Shenk‘s An Inconvenient Sequel, a sequel to the nearly eleven-year-old, Oscar-winning doc that he and director Davis Guggenheim created. And I’m afraid that the general opinion is “nice film but meh…we know the climate crisis is mostly worsening, the 2015 Paris climate accords aside, so what else is new?”
That’s what a critic friend was saying at least (“I’ve seen a lot of climate-change docs, and good as this was it’s basically more of the same”), and even though I liked Sequel I couldn’t argue all that strenuously. It’s a nicely done, intelligently assembled film but it is more or less a rehash of the original brief, which is that we’re all doomed unless climate criminals (primarily the leaders of India, China and other developing countries) wake up, man up and begin the process of switching to renewable energy sources.
The difference between An Inconvenient Truth and An Inconvenient Sequel is that the latter (a) takes a fresh look at what’s going on now (i.e., things are worse), (b) provides hope by focusing on the Paris Agreement, which Gore was very much a part of, and (c) acknowledges despair that a climate-change-denying beast is about to move into the White House.