SFIFF’s The Age of Stupid: Prepare to Get Planetarily Freaked Out (Again)


If you saw Wall-E and thought, “yikes, I don't want my great grandchildren to live in Outer-Space affixed to a giant slurpy and lounge chair, but thanks goodness it’s only a cartoon,” wait till you see The Age of Stupid Playing May 3-5 at the Kabuki, the film is part of the San Francisco International Film Festival.

The Age of Stupid is a documentary inside a mockumentary that’s also a premonitionary flash-forward (ie, it's science fiction reality programming.) Filmmaker Franny Armstrong’s movie looks at climate change through the eyes of earth’s inhabitants circa 2055. An archivist on our dying planet (played by Pete Postlethwaite) examines our species current reluctance to address global warming.  He uncovers archival footage that’s actually real-life interviews conducted by Armstrong, leading him to wonder what on earth humankind could have been thinking.

The film uses both gallows humor and animation to make its point. Animators recreated  the big bang by dropping some milk into a goldfish bowl in their college  basement. The devasted planet Earth of 2055 was achieved via photoshop.

This pre-apocalyptic documentary may well succeed in piercing our complacency to a degree matched only, perhaps, by An Inconvenient Truth.

If, however, you want to bring your kids to an earth-edifying movie, check out the nature documentary Earth.  Full of beautiful whales and bears and elephant babies. Its rated G, it’s from Disney. But spoiler alert! Cute animals starve to death.

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