Saturday, 28 January 2012

Into Eternity - a short-lived depiction

In many respects Michael Madsen's film Into Eternity reiterates a very similar documentary called Countdown to zero. Both films debate on the very same issue of dealing with the sources of nuclear power and depict their subjects from the very same, distrustful angle. Countdown to zero focused mainly on analysing the pros and cons of using nuclear power as weaponry. Into Eternity provides an in-depth discussion over the safety concerns surrounding the growing production of nuclear waste.

Yet the difference that is most striking about the two films is their use of different narrative devices. While Countdown to zero was more of a report whose aim was to raise awareness of the issue and propagate reducing the number of atomic bombs at hand, Into Eternity is an evocative piece which uses a poetic language to emphasise the uncertainty of a world in which the nuclear waste will most probably outlive our civilisation.

The film makes some very excellent points, stressing how difficult it is to speculate over how successful the attempts of concealing the nuclear waste are going to be. We are told that the waste remains radioactive for about 100,000 years and the attempts of the Finnish entrepreneurs to build the first underground facility that is designed to serve its purpose for that enormous amount of time is a herculean task.

As terrifying and eye-opening the subject of the documentary is, the film itself is too vague at presenting the possible dangers of exposing the concealed nuclear waste. That vagueness is probably caused by a very limited amount of research available at the time of making it and so the film is doomed to run out of steam about half way through its duration by repeating the same one-liners and warnings over and over again.

Informative, but not necessarily destined for a cinematic exhibition. 

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