I am no Roger Ebert, but I do love movies and documentaries, especially if they pertain to the environment. Chasing Ice is a documentary about National Geographic photographer James Balong who started the Extreme Ice Survey to document changes in glaciers in Iceland, Greenland, and Alaska. This is by no means a prolonged edition of Storm Chasers.
Kara got to see it too (Kara, are you out there??!!) and I asked for her recommendation before heading over to E Street Cinema in downtown DC. If you haven’t been to E Street Cinema I recommend you go. They have a great selection of films that most big box theaters don’t show, annnddd they serve beer and wine (their food menu is pretty unique too – jalapeno pretzels, hummus, vegan cookies).
The last environmental films I recall seeing were Gasland, Food Inc., Forks over Knives, and the grandaddy of them all – An Inconvenient Truth – all of which I enjoyed. Chasing Ice was more about the journey of James Balong and his life goal to do something meaningful. He created the Extreme Ice Survey after receiving grant funding (ice shoes and cameras to withstand -40 degree weather are not cheap) to place approximately 30 cameras at glacier sites in Iceland, Greenland, and Alaska.
The film documented James’ journey to select these field sites, and their struggle to capture useful images. I don’t want to spill the beans for you, but the glaciers did not grow larger. I appreciated the film because it showed James’ determination (e.g., knee surgery problems) and his drive to complete and make the project a success. The glacier images are captivating, his research conclusions are real evidence, and his impact (hopefully!) is one that cannot be replicated. Now Balong travels around the world and discusses his findings from the Survey.
The film is showing in major U.S. cities and I hope you have the opportunity to see it. Spoiler alert: I caught the last showing in DC last week.
Have a great week. Cheers.