Courtesy of Roadside Attractions

Courtesy of Roadside Attractions Credit: Courtesy of Roadside Attractions

Cool It 
3 stars
Documentary by Ondi Timoner

The title of “Cool It,” a new documentary from Ondi Timoner, is an apt double entendre.
On one level, it reflects the essential, inconvenient truth that we must take concrete steps to counteract global warming. But, in 2010, most of us accept that fundamental reality.

Besides, a certain Al Gore documentary owns that cinematic territory.

It is from the exploration of the title’s other meaning that Timoner’s film draws its fresh perspective and palpable urgency. With the controversial Bjørn Lomborg, Danish academic and author of “The Skeptical Environmentalist,” as its subject, the film suggests that the pervasive end of the world rhetoric centered on global warming is an alarmist, catastrophic obstacle to the drive for a rational, meaningful solution to the problem.

In other words, if we don’t “cool” our heads, we won’t find our way out of the climatological morass.

Timoner follows her subject as he crisscrosses the globe spreading his message, counteracting the images of death and destruction that dominated “An Inconvenient Truth,” questioning the viability of windmills and solar panels and speaking with scientists working on little-publicized, underfunded solutions.

The movie’s not perfect — at times, the filmmaker opts for a clichéd sprightly, computer graphics heavy approach and she inadequately explores the scientific establishment’s efforts to quiet Lomborg.

But the subject’s rationale is convincingly laid out and the look at alternate methods is comprehensive enough that “Cool It” resonates. In its own way, it’s no less essential a look at where we go from here than was “An Inconvenient Truth.”

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