Fuel (2008) - Rotten Tomatoes

Fuel (2008)

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In this feature-length documentary, filmmaker and biofuel advocate Josh Tickell explores the origins of America's dependence on fossil fuels, eventually detailing the cross-country road trip that he took in his biodiesel-converted van, campaigning for the more sustainable, environmentally friendly fuel. Tickell interviews people in his film from all over the spectrum of fuel use, from oil company executives to those devastated by water contamination stemming from oil companies to Midwestern families considering buying Hummers. Hoping to paint as complete a picture as possible of American fuel use, Tickell explores how we fuel our lifestyle in the present and how we can hope to in the future.

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Critic Reviews for Fuel

All Critics (18) | Top Critics (8)

Thanks to an informative, buoyant tone and the director's own restless intelligence, the film preaches to the unconverted with passion, energy and graphics so clear that they would make Al Gore weep all over his PowerPoint.

September 18, 2009
New York Times
Top Critic

A peppy, bouncy documentary that is watchable and informative, although Tickell's celebrity name-dropping at times detracts from the serious message.

Full Review… | September 18, 2009
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

It's a slickly enjoyable production (if unfocused and bloated), and his bullet-point tips are persuasive; but dude, there are better ways to humanize these issues than crying on camera.

Full Review… | September 16, 2009
Time Out
Top Critic

There's not a single (even moderately) dissenting voice in Fuel; you're either on the biodiesel bandwagon or raping the planet.

Full Review… | September 15, 2009
Village Voice
Top Critic

One of the refreshing traits of this action-nudging documentary is Tickell's willingness to wrestle his own biases.

March 20, 2009
Denver Post
Top Critic

Smartly animated interstitials, memorable archival material and a lively soundtrack round out the fast-paced proceedings.

Full Review… | February 13, 2009
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Fuel

This is a really good documentary facing the obvious problem of our civilization. America needs to get off of oil & pursue alternative energy namely biodiesel. America needs to invest heavily in the future & this is a fact. This film reminded me a lot of the book "The End of Oil".

David Bocek
David Bocek

This thesis-driven documentary makes the case for biofuels as a viable replacement for oil. On another site, I make the case that conflating our involvement with the Middle East with oil only is a myopic point of view (link at the end of the review), and this is just one of the arguments presented in Fuel that bothered me. Additionally, almost every other argument was a pathos argument that deployed the same overblown sentiment: "What about the children? We're borrowing the environment from our children." In the words of George Carlin, "Fuck the children." Even if you're not angered by the obsession with children that this film deploys, you'd have to admit that the argument loses its effectiveness after it's repeated almost every five minutes. I also wonder if people fifty years from now will look at the scene in which two people drink bio-oil the same way we look at footage of people fifty year ago drinking DDT. Overall, there is some good information in this film, but the arguments get repetitive and tired. http://dissidentvoice.org/2009/10/bumper-sticker-wisdom/ http://dissidentvoice.org/2009/10/bumper-sticker-wisdom/

Jim Hunter
Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer

½

As in all documentaries, this film is based on theories. Do I think that there was cover ups? Absolutely. Do I think we are dependent on oil? Absolutely. Do I think that we can improve where we are? Absolutely. I believe that this earth is renewable, maybe that's my stupidity. I also believe that the war on terrorism wasn't all about oil. Joshua Tickell has some amazing ideas however he also gave some truths. Whatsmore, he is such a fervent promoter of bio-diesel that he doesn't give us the flawed side of it. His ideas are good but as I said I believe that our earth is renewable and God did give us a brain to use it. www.what-to-watch.com

Laura Rachel
Laura Rachel

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