A Crude Awakening

The Oil Crash

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Official film description...

An unforgettable and shocking wake-up call, “A Crude Awakening” offers the rock-solid argument that the era of cheap oil is in the past. Relentless and clear-eyed, this intensively-researched film drills deep into the uncomfortable realities of a world that is both addicted to fossil fuels and blissfully unaware of the looming “peak oil” crisis. Drawing on an international cast of maverick energy experts and thinkers, directors Basil Gelpke and Ray McCormack debunk the conventional wisdom that oil production will continue to climb, and instead stare bleakly at a planet facing economic meltdown and conflict over its most valuable resource. Featuring a haunting score by Phillip Glass and a fascinating array of rare archival footage, the film explores oil's rocky relationship with human progress in locales ranging from ancient Baku, Azerbaijan to dusty oilpatch town McCamey, Texas.

Amidst a dark and disturbing vision of our future, a crude awakening hints at a humbler way of life built around sustainability and alternative energy, providing a visually stunning, boldly prophetic testament which provokes not just thought but action.

Notes on the film...

“A Crude Awakening: The Oil Crash” by Basil Gelpke and Ray McCormack hasn’t yet created as big a stir as Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth”, but it is far more startling. The consequences of an oil shortage or “Peak Oil” (exceeding the maximum rate of petroleum extraction) within the next few decades will change everything fundamentally. Globalisation, everyday life, climate change, food production – everything will be deeply affected, but little action is being taken and often the matter is not even discussed.

So-called “Peak Oil Theorists” expected the peak to be reached in 2005. Optimists, such as the Swiss Petroleum Association, predict “Peak Oil” to occur between 2020 and 2030.This is a miniscule difference of 20 years for a change of such gigantic proportions in the global energy supply.

Further reviews...

“Thoroughness and cinematic brilliance in one. The authors deal with the mass of information cleverly from the didactic point of view while offering a startling visual impression.” – Tages Anzeiger Züritipp

“A comprehensive analysis, important message and intelligent entertainment” – Filmpreis Zürich 2006

“'The Oil Crash' is compulsory viewing, not only for every politician but also for every energy consumer – and that doesn’t just mean car-drivers. This is a wake-up call we mustn’t ignore.” – Thomas Hunziker, filmblog.ch

“Crude oil is the lubricant of progress. Our modern society would be unthinkable without this powerful raw material. A dependency that has developed into an enormous burden. In 'The Oil Crash', Zurich director Basil Gelpke shows that the situation regarding oil reserves is far worse than assumed. This Swiss documentary has already caused a stir in the US.“– SF DRS

Technical information and screening rights...

Director: Ray McCormack, Basil Gelpke and Reto Caduff
Production: Lava Productions
Country: Germany, Switzerland
Year: 2006
Run Time: 83 minutes
Language (Audio): English, German
Language (Subtitles): German, French
Age restriction: 6
Screening Rights Switzerland: Columbus Film

More information...

Oilcrash.com – figures and facts about problems and solutions

Persons: Daniele Ganser | Richard Heinberg | James Howard Kunstler | Colin Campbell


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