Angela Howe, Ryan Johnson and I recently saw the documentary Fuel. This is Angela’s review.

The documentary “Fuel” was directed and narrated by Josh Tickell, the bio-fuel champion who drove his flower-clad biodiesel van around the nation for the past ten years speaking to people about the virtues of organic-based fuel. Naturally, much of this movie is also geared at the promotion of bio-diesel, as evidenced by Josh’s favorite sign: “Change the World” [flip over] “Change Your Fuel.” The movie asserts that America’s addiction to fuel has caused environmental calamities, including water quality degradation and global warming which increases storm occurrences like Hurricane Katrina. The movie also linked the addiction to fuel for what occurred on 9/11, the Iraq war, and what was mentioned several times as the “Military Petroleum Complex.” The film was politically charged and suffice it to say, not unbiased, with interviews of Robert Kennedy, Jr. and a glorification of Jimmy Carter.

Nonetheless, the movie opens your eyes to a new world view – exposing America’s love affair with oil industry through tax breaks and political back-scratching, while juxtaposing European Countries who subsidize alternative energy. It also discusses the world’s food and oil production cycles and addresses the counter-arguments to bio-fuels. The film does a good job of encouraging independent education to its audience, included in the 10 things you can do.

A beautiful underlying lesson of the film is its encouragement of grassroots activism: change your life, then change the laws – and then our addiction to oil will no longer be “a shame, a flat a$$ shame,” (as Elmer Fudd [yes, that was his name] from Texas eloquently summarized in the film).