7.1/10
288
1 user 11 critic

The City Dark (2011)

Not Rated | | Documentary, News | March 2011 (USA)
Trailer
2:06 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

THE CITY DARK is a feature documentary about the loss of night. After moving to NYC from rural Maine, filmmaker Ian Cheney asks a simple question - do we need the stars? - taking him from ... See full summary »

Director:

Reviews
4 wins. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Documentary | Biography
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A profile of the noted and extraordinarily cheerful veteran New York City fashion photographer.

Director: Richard Press
Stars: Bill Cunningham, Anna Wintour, Michael Kors
King Corn (2007)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

King Corn is a feature documentary about two friends, one acre of corn, and the subsidized crop that drives our fast-food nation. In King Corn, Ian Cheney and Curt Ellis, best friends from ... See full summary »

Director: Aaron Woolf
Stars: Bob Bledsoe, Earl L. Butz, Dawn Cheney
Documentary | Biography
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Italian-born Massimo and Lella Vignelli are among the world's most influential designers. Throughout their long career, their motto has been, 'If you can't find it, design it' The work ... See full summary »

Directors: Kathy Brew, Roberto Guerra
Stars: Paola Antonelli, Barry Bergdoll, Michael Bierut
The Waiting Room III (2012)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Go behind the doors of an American public hospital struggling to care for a community of largely uninsured patients.

Director: Peter Nicks
Documentary | Comedy | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Who was General Tso, and why are we eating his chicken? This feature documentary explores the origins and ubiquity of Chinese-American food through the story of an iconic sweet and spicy chicken dish.

Director: Ian Cheney
Stars: Ian Cheney
Objectified (2009)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A feature-length documentary about our complex relationship with manufactured objects and, by extension, the people who design them.

Director: Gary Hustwit
Stars: Paola Antonelli, Chris Bangle, Andrew Blauvelt
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A look at the life and work of Gucci fashion designer, Frida Giannini.

Director: Christina Voros
Stars: Frida Giannini, Matvey Lykov
Life in a Day (2011)
Documentary | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A documentary shot by film-makers all over the world that serves as a time capsule to show future generations what it was like to be alive on the twenty-fourth of July, 2010.

Directors: Loressa Clisby, Kevin Macdonald, and 30 more credits »
Stars: Hiroaki Aikawa, Cindy Baer, Teagan Bentley
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A documentary that chronicles artist and activist Ai Weiwei as he prepares for a series of exhibitions and gets into an increasing number of clashes with the Chinese government.

Director: Alison Klayman
Stars: Ai Weiwei, Dan Ai, Lao Ai
Pina (2011)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A tribute to the late German choreographer, Pina Bausch, as her dancers perform her most famous creations.

Director: Wim Wenders
Stars: Pina Bausch, Regina Advento, Malou Airaudo
Documentary | Biography
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A documentary on legendary movie-poster artist Drew Struzan.

Director: Erik Sharkey
Stars: Drew Struzan, Harrison Ford, Michael J. Fox
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A documentary that follows the journeys of indie game developers as they create games and release those works, and themselves, to the world.

Directors: Lisanne Pajot, James Swirsky
Stars: Jonathan Blow, Brandon Boyer, Renaud Bédard
Edit

Storyline

THE CITY DARK is a feature documentary about the loss of night. After moving to NYC from rural Maine, filmmaker Ian Cheney asks a simple question - do we need the stars? - taking him from Brooklyn to Mauna Kea, Paris, and beyond. Exploring the threat of killer asteroids in Hawaii, tracking hatching turtles along the Florida coast, and rescuing injured birds on Chicago streets, Cheney unravels the myriad implications of a globe glittering with lights - including increased breast cancer rates from exposure to light at night, and a generation of kids without a glimpse of the universe above. Featuring stunning astrophotography and a cast of eclectic scientists, THE CITY DARK is the definitive story of light pollution and the disappearing stars. Written by Wicked Delicate Films

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

a search for night on a planet that never sleeps See more »

Genres:

Documentary | News

Certificate:

Not Rated
Edit

Details

Language:

Release Date:

March 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The City Dark - Auf der Suche nach der Dunkelheit  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

See  »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A Film that Shines a Bright Light on the Question of Artificial Lighting.
16 March 2011 | by (Austin, TX, United States) – See all my reviews

In many ways the most complex issue that we face as a civilization are the trade offs between the costs and benefits of modernity. One of the most trans-formative changes of the last century has been the massive expansion of artificial light which has transformed our concepts of natural daylight and darkness and in so doing transformed our way of life. Thomas Edison's electric light bulb is in many ways the core invention of our modern way of life. Artificial lighting represents one of humankind's greatest triumphs over the natural world. But at the same kind, artificial lighting has remarkable, and usually unremarked, upon costs.

The City Dark takes on the challenge of trying to understand what we are losing through the loss of darkness. The City Dark has been filmed in a beautiful and elegant style – a sort of visual poetry that draws the viewer in. The beauty of the filming and insights of the interviews literally paint us picture of the costs of electric lighting. The film is an enchanting philosophical study of how artificial light is changing our lives in profound ways. It explores how we are becoming disconnected from our natural surroundings – particularly the stars of the night sky that are being lost to light pollution in our urban areas. Its biggest flaw is that it spends too much time on how we've lost contact with the beauty of the night sky before getting to the more intriguing ways in which artificial lighting is affecting the well-being of our society. The later parts of the film examine how our changes to the lighting environment are harming the wildlife - such as turtles and birds. It also explores how lighting may be having deleterious effects on human health in profound and unexpected ways.

This film literally asks us to considering the costs of our modernity, science and indeed literally of our enlightenment. Those are questions that we need to be asking in our modern, scientific world as we come to realize the costs of our modern way of life.


15 of 17 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss The City Dark (2011) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page