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» Film-Tech Forum   » Community   » Film Handlers' Movie Reviews   » Who Killed The Electric Car?

   
Author Topic: Who Killed The Electric Car?
Mark Gulbrandsen
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Posts: 16115
From: Bountiful, Utah
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 10-13-2006 09:40 PM      Profile for Mark Gulbrandsen   Email Mark Gulbrandsen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Chris Paine's riviting documentary about the experimental GM EV-1 electric car. A car that could do 0 to 60 in just a hair over 3 seconds! A fantastic electric car that for the most part lived up to its design once they got rid of the Delco batteries and installed a private inventors batteries. See how, why, and by who this amazing electric car was squashed(literally). This is a must see documntary and it will leave you very frustrated big time at the end. Four Stars!!
P.S. You will also be amazed at the 82 year old inventor thats interviewed in the film. He designed the more dependable batteries for the car and in the end GM bought controling interests in his company and after killing the EV-1 sold its interest to Texaco. Also shown are several other electric cars, hybrid cars and fuel cell powered cars. An amazing scene that shows the 82 year old inventors photo cells that come in the form of roofing shingles will raise the hair on your back!

Viewed at the restored Rialto Theater in Casper, WY. Image and sound were excellent even though much of the documentary was originated on video. Video transfers and scenes shot on video seem to be getting less objectionable lately for some reason although they still stand out.

Mark

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Chad Souder
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 962
From: Waterloo, IA, USA
Registered: Feb 2000


 - posted 10-19-2006 09:29 PM      Profile for Chad Souder   Email Chad Souder   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I wasn't going to comment because I didn't want to cross the "no politics" line (I interpreted this as a political movie), but since the thread has already been started I will add my 2 cents.

Watching this movie was one of those events where it's an hour and a half long bitch fest that provides no real answers. They don't even answer the question that makes the title of the movie. Who killed it? It was GM; no, it was Toyota; no, it was George Bush; no, it was big oil companies. This movie provided nothing you couldn't find for yourself with simple google searches. But wait! Martin Sheen is narrating and he's an actor so he must be really smart so we should all pay attention! [Roll Eyes] I'm so tired of the idea that because a celebrity is saying it, it must be true and a good idea.

I too enjoyed the old man with the shingles (the roof kind, not the viral infection kind) talking about his different inventions, although he came across as kind of selfish when he talked about not getting a congratulatory celebration.

In general, I thought this movie was pointless and was released for the sake of trying to influence voters during the upcoming elections. Even the title of the movie is quite off, because nobody killed the electric car. There are a host of vendors to buy conversion kits including some that do the work for you. My dad and I once considered doing it just as a fun project. As with any product in our country, if there is enough of a demand you can bet somebody is going to sell it.

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Mark Gulbrandsen
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From: Bountiful, Utah
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 10-23-2006 09:43 PM      Profile for Mark Gulbrandsen   Email Mark Gulbrandsen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Chad,

You definately missed the bus and its a good thing it wasn't electric. You must have taken a piss during one of the more important parts of the film othersise you'd have known that the Chairman of the board of C.A.R.B. became part owner of a company that manufactures fuel cells sortly before C.A.R.B. dropped the mandatory ratings for no emmission from x% of California vehcles. Since the film presented all sides of the story... not an arguement for or against the car I wouldn't classify it as a political film. In the real world it was a really cool car and it rarely ever broke down!

And yes, we'd all be happier of plain ole you wouuld take over doing the narration of all future documentaries. I too am getting sick of hearing well known voices on documentary films. Hey, you don't suppose that he actually owned one of those cars do you????

Mark

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Chad Souder
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From: Waterloo, IA, USA
Registered: Feb 2000


 - posted 10-25-2006 03:05 PM      Profile for Chad Souder   Email Chad Souder   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Mark -

All due respect, but I think this movie is clearly political. California Air Resources Board is a body that deals with the environment, which is obviously a part of politics. The part of the movie where they point our that Arnold's hydrogen Hummer was not production and just for show when he does appearences is politics. Showing the clip of George Bush promoting hydrogen is politics. The movie touched on several politicians. If it's not a political movie, what is? It doesn't take away anything from the movie, I just simply stated that because of this forum's rules against it.

I supposed Mr. Sheen could very well have owned one of the EV-1 cars; he certainly had the money to afford one, and celebrities have never been known to be hypocritical. [Big Grin] I have no doubt that it ended up being a good, reliable car. I was trying only to comment on the movie itself, not the product the movie was discussing.

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Mark Gulbrandsen
Resident Trollmaster

Posts: 16115
From: Bountiful, Utah
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 10-25-2006 07:24 PM      Profile for Mark Gulbrandsen   Email Mark Gulbrandsen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Chad,
Although the film contained many political appendaces amd appearances by politicians I still viewed the film as well balanced in its presentation. It was presented from both a technical and political standpoint. We all knew at the end of the film that Fuel Cells are NOT the way to be headed and why the car was killed! In reality the car was killed not because of political reasons but because the Chairman of the Board of CARB became part owner of a fuel cell research company and manipulated the appearances to the CARB board of testimony in favor of the EV-1 and other similar cars.... that is not a political reason but one of dishonesty and self preservence of this one board member. had the proper testimony been alowed the EV-1 would still be humming on the streets and we'd probably already be seeing the EV-2.

Mark

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Michael Schaffer
"Where is the
Boardwalk Hotel?"

Posts: 4143
From: Boston, MA
Registered: Apr 2002


 - posted 10-26-2006 08:40 PM      Profile for Michael Schaffer   Author's Homepage   Email Michael Schaffer   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I have to side with Mark on this one [Eek!]

The history of science and technology can not be separated from the political factors around it.
Scientific or technological breakthroughs and developments can have the most fundamental impact on society and politics and political factors massively influence the development of technology - see Galilei and Newton or the development of nuclear physics up to the development of the nuclear bomb and the ensueing technology and arms race all the way into space we call the Cold War - or "technology wars" such as the competition between Edison and Westinghouse which was very politically entangled.
It's not like inventors sit in an ivory tower or barn somewhere isolated from the world and invent stuff (like in "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang").

Especially when it comes to such essential technologies as transportation and the resources needed to keep it going, the whole subject *is* highly political.
Some of the major objectives of many wars fought since the beginning of the 20th century were access to fossil fuels which are one of *the* most essential resources for industrial nations.

This shows us how critical and dangerous the whole subject is. Because at this point, politics have become way too much involved in profit making and political goals and the profits which can be reaped from them are way too much entangled. That is why the development of alternative energy sources should be one of the major objectives of industrial nations everywhere, not just the US, quite apart from the very massive environmental effects our current overuse of non-renewable fossil fuels has.

That is not really a political view or discussion anymore. It is a scientifically provable necessity. The problem is that it still gets caught up in politics way too much.

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Mark Gulbrandsen
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From: Bountiful, Utah
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 10-28-2006 04:59 AM      Profile for Mark Gulbrandsen   Email Mark Gulbrandsen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Michael puts it very well. This film definately left me very frustrated at the end because the EV-1 could have had unimaginable positive impact on the world as we know it. Sad... very sad!

Mark

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Fred Georges
Master Film Handler

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From: Lombard, IL, USA
Registered: Jun 2000


 - posted 10-28-2006 11:51 AM      Profile for Fred Georges   Email Fred Georges   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I did an industrial where the featured speaker was an exec in charge of the GM electric car project. His talk & powerpoint were tantillizing to say the least. His parting shot was "GM will NOT be the first Car company to introduce a practical electric Car But, GM will be the FIRST to sell a Million of Them!". I Guess not [Confused]

[ 10-30-2006, 10:11 AM: Message edited by: Fred Georges ]

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