Tuesday, January 12, 2010
Movie: Collapse (2009)
Journalist Michael Ruppert is the guy that yells “don’t!” as the Trojans bring in the Wooden Horse. And no-one listens. At least, that is how he presents himself in the documentary Collapse. The film is not much more than an interview with Ruppert on oil, energy, money and food, shot over a period of five days and interspersed with archive footage of everything he talks about.
Here is the deal: Ruppert predicts the imminent collapse of the modern global industrial society. And he makes a pretty good statement. The whole world is based on oil, or, more precisely, finite resources. Not only electricity and fuel comes from oil, but products like cars itself come from oil. Oil is needed for all the plastic we use, from toothpaste to car tires. At the same time, our economy and our political ideologies are based on the false assumption of infinite growth. When infinite growth and finite resources meet eachother, collapse of society follows.
He might be a madman, he might also be a prophet. Collapse feels as a populist documentary but it presents a very clear story with no statistics, only the mention of trends that we are all already aware of. Ruppert is no scientist, and gets his opinions of what he finds out as a journalist, but his conclusions do not deviate much from the similar titled book Collapse by scientist Jared Diamond. Ruppert paints an even bleaker future than Diamond, but he might just be right. I haven’t decided yet.
At one point in the movie, after listing example after example of what is happening to our civilization, Ruppert collapses himself and starts to cry. Before the subtitles start, we are told that Ruppert has stopped writing and lecturing. He has given up, retired to his home, getting joy out of little things and holds on tight for the plunge.
Collapse is the ultimate feed-bad movie, but it is worth seeing.