Petropolis: Aerial Perspectives on the Alberta Tar Sands

Critics Consensus

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89%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 9

59%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 109

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Movie Info

Shot primarily from a helicopter, filmmaker Peter Mettler's "Petropolis: Aerial Perspectives on the Alberta Tar Sands" offers an unparalleled view of the world's largest industrial, capital and energy project.

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Critic Reviews for Petropolis: Aerial Perspectives on the Alberta Tar Sands

All Critics (9) | Top Critics (4) | Fresh (8) | Rotten (1)

  • Peter Mettler, its director, is trying to show how the second largest oil reserve in the world, which emits more CO2 each day than all the vehicles in Canada, has despoiled a track of the boreal forest as big as England.

    May 20, 2010 | Rating: 3/5
  • This timely oil industry documentary from Greenpeace is only 43 minutes long, but stunning, fugue-like aerial photography justifies its cinema release.

    May 14, 2010 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

    Cath Clarke

    Guardian
    Top Critic
  • Peeled-back forests; outflow lakes black with bitumen; valleys eczema'd by excavation; it is at once scary, nightmarish and oddly beautiful.

    May 13, 2010 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • The film's power is the contemplative space crafted by Mettler and his collaborators.

    January 22, 2010 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • Petropolis is a motion picture quite unlike anything we've seen, a monumental oil-painting-in-progress. It has to be seen to be believed, and even then you wonder: what the hell was that?

    July 26, 2019 | Full Review…
  • Sumptuous cinematography gives this documentary an artistic feel that makes it almost hypnotic as mainly aerial cameras explore the world's second biggest oil reserve. But even with minimal text, it still makes its point with elegant simplicity.

    May 20, 2010 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Petropolis: Aerial Perspectives on the Alberta Tar Sands

  • Jan 30, 2010
    You get what you expect to see in flying over oil pits but then you get more...strange colours and shapes that you didn't anticipate all in an environment that seems the very opposite of environment. Not Bad China as in Manufactured Landscapes. Bad Canada. Profit driven to the point of destroying what we claim to be most proud of.
    John B Super Reviewer

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