Like The American Ruling Class, Everything’s Cool is one of those documentaries that strikes me as only mediocre as a film, but that is well-intentioned and is on the right side of a very important issue. And since the latter is a lot more important in my mind, I suppose I have to give this movie a positive assessment.
Everything’s Cool is about global warming, but not really about making a scientific argument (even a popular scientific argument) about it. The narrator simply asserts periodically that it’s a fact that human-caused climate change will seriously damage or destroy the human species in the near to intermediate term future in the absence of major global lifestyle changes. I’m closer to agreeing than disagreeing with that, but it’s facile and, probably, somewhat overstated.
But even if the likelihood and magnitude of disaster are a bit lower than the movie states, they’re plenty high enough to be very concerned about. So anything—like this movie—that raises consciousness and pushes people in a positive direction is to be applauded.
Unfortunately I just wasn’t all that drawn in by the movie. They chose to focus more on the media coverage and the gulf between the scientific consensus and public opinion, but while that has the potential to be a lot more interesting to me than if it were hard science that I wouldn’t understand anyway, the way they did it failed to realize that potential.
The film follows a handful of people who have some connection with public perception of the climate change issue, and gives us a chance to get to know them and their take on these things. But a lot of that just isn’t very interesting. I didn’t much care about the Weather Channel gal and all the behind the scenes stuff about making on-air exchanges about global warming into ratings grabbers.
I’d like to have seen more emphasis on their point that on a lot of issues of public controversy, the controversy has been artificially created by unscrupulous people paid to lie by those who have the most to lose if the truth were to win out. They’re absolutely right that a lot of the people claiming global warming is a myth don’t believe that themselves but are just well-paid public relations hacks for certain industries. I think that point needs to be hammered home.
Everything’s Cool doesn’t get very deep or stick with the things where I felt it was making good points. It gets bogged down too much in personalities and anecdotes.