The subtitle of this documentary revels in the pun “A Burning Need to Change Course”. It is not unlike “The End of Suburbia” but this work, as the name suggests, is more interested in where North American Energy Supplies will come from in the next 100 years. They line up talking heads from various fields of expertise which includes alternative energy, energy conservation, hydrogen energy, wind power, recycling and so on. We get to see what is possible with a well designed passive solar house. Every now and again Climate Change is dropped into the conversation for good measure but it is clear that this is not the major driving force behind this movie. The result is not overly fascinating or engrossing. It all reminds you of the sort of worthy documentaries we were made to watch at school when the teachers couldn’t be bothered to do a proper lesson. At least it isn’t as scary as some of the apocalyptic works you can see on these pages. It has a more upbeat and positive mood whilst being realistic about the impact of energy poverty upon North America. Educational but dull.
If you have a crowd of sympathisers who want a decent hour’s primer on alternative energy options then this is the DVD for you. It comes packaged with extra sections on Cuba and a “Green Home” whatever that is. There is also a very dated (and seemingly ironic) US Energy educational Film called “Energy: Critical Choices Ahead” which was made in 1974 right after the first Oil shock in 1973. Clearly nothing was learnt and nothing was done. As much a testimony to the never-ending foolishness of our American Cousins. Like so many of these US-centric Movies you get the clear impression that, since America wastes so much of its energy, then they have so many ‘easy-wins’ in the conservation area. There is no clear lesson for Europe or Japan who are often held up as a glowing examples of low-energy usage in comparison to the US. Wouldn’t it be great to see work like this filmed for Europe? You can learn more at the maker’s web site at www.energyxroads.com where you can order your copy.