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Revenge of the Electric Car (4 stars)

Tim Robbins narrates this environmental doc with a positive story to tell

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Revenge of the Electric Car

Here’s a rarity: an environmentally themed documentary that’s got a positive story to tell. It’s a sequel to director Chris Paine’s 2006 doc Who Killed the Electric Car?, which was another deeply frustrating story of failure to do right by the environment. Paine’s first film was an indictment of the business decision to scrap promising new green automobile technology, specifically US manufacturing giant GM Motors’ abandonment of its pioneering gasoline-free car EV1. Six years on, Paine revisits the story of the green car, which is now powering ahead in a very different cultural and corporate climate. Having recalled and crushed EV1, GM has now made a U-turn and is putting its weight behind the electric car once again.

The fact that Paine got unprecedented behind-the-scenes access over a three-year period to the notoriously secretive GM and it’s even more notorious boss Bob Lutz confirms that the corporation wants its second shot at green technology heavily publicised, even if, under Paine’s direction, it’s a warts-and-all story. Otherwise, Paine’s film, narrated by Tim Robbins, speeds along as smoothly as the now defunct EV1.

Revenge of the Electric Car

  • 4 stars
  • 2011
  • US
  • 90 min
  • PG
  • Directed by: Chris Paine
  • Written by: P.G. Morgan, Chris Paine
  • Cast: Tim Robbins, Danny DeVito, John Favreau
  • UK release: 20 July 2012

Narrated by Tim Robbins this documentary from director Chris Paine goes behind the scenes at General Motors, Nissan and Tesla Motors to explore electric car research and development programs. A warts-and-all investigation of the green car but with a positive story to tell.

Elsewhere on the web

Official Trailer: Revenge of the Electric Car

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