The modern suburbs have ultimately become an unsustainable way of living. They were originally developed in an era of cheap oil, when the automobile became the center of the way people ...
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The modern suburbs have ultimately become an unsustainable way of living. They were originally developed in an era of cheap oil, when the automobile became the center of the way people lived and an era when people wanted to escape the inner city to a more pastoral or rural way of life. However the suburbs quickly evolved into a merely a place to live that had neither the benefits of rural or urban life, and where one was reliant on an automobile both to travel elsewhere and even travel within the neighborhood. The suburbs are not only dependent upon cheap energy, but also reliable energy. The reliability of energy is becoming less so as demonstrated by the multi-day blackout of the North American Eastern Seaboard starting on August 14, 2003. Part of the problem of getting out of the suburban mentality is that a generation has grown up believing it to be a normal way of life, and a life of entitlement, which they will not give up without a fight. But many developers and planners and ...Written by
I was recommended this movie by my professor in an Intro to Urbanism class at a Canadian university. I was expecting a fair and balanced analysis of why suburbia is going to end, voiced by professional planners, theorists, and scholars. What I got was a bunch of anti-oil, doom-saying, fear-mongering talking heads who, as far as I could tell, had no association with any universities, government organizations, or think-tanks. The most professional speaker involved was a consultant for the oil companies. Each person featured in the film either had a book to sell on the subject of anti-oil or otherwise had an interest in the field.
That said, I find this film more in line of those by Michael Moore and less of actual documentaries. Fair and balanced this was not. Now I do enjoy Moore's films, but calling them "American History" is a bit out of line, the same way this film stretched it's educational worth. The amount of fear-mongering and doom-saying involved was enough to seriously anger me at the film. I was severely upset at how low these pundits stooped to get an emotional reaction.
And they barely made you feel any better about the future. Between a depression we will never escape to visions of a oil-depleted Holocaust they really didn't give the viewer any hope about the alternatives. Personally I feel that rising oil prices will make environmentally progressive energy sources look more appealing to the energy companies, which is a very good thing. Needless to say this film didn't affirm my positive views of the future.
So, if you want an emotionally charged, propaganda-esq film filled with "holier than thou" individuals who probably also believe JFK was killed by aliens, this may be for you. But if you want a serious, educational film about the how's and why's of suburbia's eventual decline, stay away. Needless to say this film pushed my buttons, and not in the ways I wanted.
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