Ahead of screenings at the Telluride Film Festival over Labor Day weekend, Academy Award-winning documentary filmmaker Errol Morris debuted a series of 19 30-second spots featuring “Better Call Saul” Emmy nominee Bob Odenkirk.
Each of the clips, which IndieWire has assembled into a single video below, slyly points at a different aspect of climate change, with Odenkirk playing Admiral Horatio Horntower (obviously a play on C.S. Forester’s fictional Horatio Hornblower character) as he stands atop a disappearing iceberg, pondering life’s mysteries alongside his animal friends who realize, unlike Horatio, that the planet is on the brink of a total climate meltdown. “I’m not worried!” says Horatio, who’s in denial. But the penguins and the seals are awake to what’s going on in these clips presented by Biscuit Filmworks & Fourth Floor Productions.
Below is the statement from director Morris, who won his Oscar in 2004 for “The Fog of War: Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara,” recently premiered crime miniseries “Wormwood” on Netflix, and debuted the Steve Bannon portrait “American Dharma” at the Toronto Film Festival in 2018. After an uphill climb, “American Dharma” was able to secure distribution in spring 2019, with Utopia opening the film on November 1 in New York followed by an awards-season rollout across the country.
The statement is posted on the website for the Institute for the Future.
“I have never had any trouble believing in climate change, global warming, or whatever you want to call it. The scientific evidence is overwhelming. Galileo famously replied to Archbishop Piccolomini (or some other Vatican prelate), “And yet it moves.” Today we could just as well say, “And yet it changes.” But what to do about it? Logic rarely convinces anybody of anything. Climate change has become yet another vehicle for political polarization. If Al Gore said the Earth was round there would be political opposition insisting that the Earth was flat. It’s all so preposterous, so contemptible,” writes Morris.
“I’ve created 19 30-second spots that profile a character I created: Admiral Horatio Horntower. He’s an admiral of a fleet of one and perhaps the last man on Earth. Hopefully it captures the absurdity and the desperation of our current situation. No pie graphs, no PowerPoint — just a blithering idiot played by one of my favorite actors, Bob Odenkirk.”