A global warning: Gore did it better

Review C

August 31, 2007|By Michael Sragow | Michael Sragow,Sun movie critic

"The United States invariably does the right thing after having exhausted every other alternative." A variation on that Winston Churchill quote triggers the only laugh to be had in The 11th Hour. As the narrator of this sprawling documentary about climate change, Leonardo DiCaprio makes the Al Gore of An Inconvenient Truth seem like JFK and Jon Stewart rolled into one. Almost always viewed with darkish sad rags on his body (mourning clothes for Mother Earth?) and an urgent earnestness freezing his face, DiCaprio makes self-abnegation heavy-handed.

Operating like the anonymous host of a cable-access educational channel, DiCaprio simultaneously tries to capitalize on the success of An Inconvenient Truth and ignore it. He takes audiences back to square one of the causes and effects of global warming before moving into fresher areas of discussion, such as the aesthetic and commercial potential of nature-friendly architecture and commercial design.

The 11th Hour (Warner Independent) A documentary by Nadia Conners and Leila Conners Petersen; narrated by Leonardo DiCaprio. Rated PG. Time 95 minutes.

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