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A Crude Awakening

Debate and Discussion

This section looks at an interview with the director. The responses raise further questions for discussion. Read the responses and consider the questions.

Question: Describe your movie using a paragraph or less.

Photograph of film maker Ray McCormack, one of the directors of A Crude Awakening - The Oil Crash

Ray McCormack

Ray McCormack: "It's a political documentary that demonstrates the world can never produce any more oil than it is producing now and looks at what this means for us all. It's all the more convincing because the people that tell us how dark the future might turn out to be are not deep greens or survivalists but political scientists, academics and even a Republican, all of whose politics could only be described as conservative. It's the most frightening film in which I've ever been involved."

What do you think?

  • How important is this range of sources to you?
  • Do you think that this is more likely to provide audiences with the truth?

Question: What was the biggest challenge in the production of the movie, be it principal photography or post production?

Ray McCormack: "Turning a dry, didactic, intellectual subject into a compelling film. To a large degree, we feel we've done that. The only thing missing is Al Gore!"

What do you think?

  • How well do you think the filmmakers have achieved their aim?
  • How difficult do you think this task would be?

Question: What would you say to someone on the street to see your film instead of the latest blockbuster playing at the multiplex?

Ray McCormack: "Just for a change, go and find out what's really happening in the world instead of trying to escape from it. It's more frightening than any horror movie you'll see in there."

What do you think?

  • How effective do you think this approach is?
  • Is it the place of a documentary to tell us 'what's really happening'?

Extension tasks

A Crude Awakening is one of many recent films that deal with environmental issues.

  • How important do you think these films are?
  • How much difference do you think they are having on those that watch them?

Think about your own experience -

  • Have you made any changes to your lifestyle or written to your local MP
  • What do you think motivates filmmakers to produce this kind of work?