While most Americans believe that the Middle East is the source of most of the world's oil, in fact Canada exports more oil to the United States than any other country, and the province of Alberta is home to one of the largest oil fields on Earth, a supply so large that it alone could satisfy the global demand for petroleum for fifty years. However, the oil in Alberta is what as known as "oil sand," and it's the dirtiest and least pure of all types of oil. Extracting useable oil from oil sand is a process that requires a great deal of energy and lots of water -- four barrels of fresh water for every barrel of oil produced, a demand that threatens Alberta's natural watershed. The refining process also creates a large amount of toxic by-products, and cases of cancer in both humans and wildlife have skyrocketed in Alberta since large-scale oil sand refining began. However, while the danger is real and evident, corporate interests and government officials have stood in the way of enforcing the environmental legislation that would mandate cleaner and more efficient refining methods, and noted scientist David Suzuki has said of the situation in Alberta, "We are creating an environmental catastrophe that will take centuries to recover from . . . if we recover at all" H2Oil is a documentary by filmmaker Shannon Walsh that examines the controversy over oil sand in Canada, and can and must be done to stop the crisis before it's too late. H2Oil was an official selection at the 2009 Hot Docs International Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi … More
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Critic Reviews for H2Oil
H2Oil is a hard-hitting, if thoroughly depressing eco-documentary that demands to be seen.
It never distinguishes between its moving human stories and a general eco-activism, which does nothing much to sharpen their individual cases.
Sadly, the lacklustre expert testimonies and lengthy sequences of executive intransigence in the face of community indignation fail to grab the attention, rendering this a laudable but dull exposť of a growing environmental concern.
"It's the biggest unsustainable development on the planet," says one campaigner, indirectly explaining the need for three films that tell us that. Form and content in perfect harmony.
Walsh's documentary is shot with flair but its message and innovative touches just miss the mark.
The arguments propounded on behalf of the environment look faultless, but they could be distilled into a 10-minute video campaign rather than stretched beyond an hour.
Audience Reviews for H2Oil
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