Blue Gold: World Water Wars

Alternately political and apolitical, pessimistic and optimistic -- but rarely, if ever, cinematic -- Sam Bozzo's "Blue Gold: World Water Wars" works best as a smallscreen educational docu that alerts its audience to the corporate raiding of dangerously diminishing H2O supplies worldwide.

Alternately political and apolitical, pessimistic and optimistic — but rarely, if ever, cinematic — Sam Bozzo’s “Blue Gold: World Water Wars” works best as a smallscreen educational docu that alerts its audience to the corporate raiding of dangerously diminishing H2O supplies worldwide. Book-based film combines footage, including re-enactments, from around the globe, adding illustrative animation in a bid to hydrate its rather parched narrative. If the modestly budgeted docu introduces fest and TV auds to the scarcity and increased privatization of Earth’s life source (without encouraging those auds to invest in water stocks), it’ll be a success.

Narrated intensely by Malcolm McDowell, pic opens with a sepia-toned scene, set in 1906, of a gold-seeking Mexican man stumbling toward California in his seventh day without agua — this to illustrate that the basic human need for water ought to trump nationality and politics.

Harder-hitting, but relegated to the final reel, is the allegation that Jenna Bush and others in her family have snapped up thousands of acres in Paraguay, believing the country will become the “Middle East of water,” as one talking head puts it.

Tonally erratic editing uses the Bolivian popular uprising against water-hoarding multinational Bechtel and the World Bank twice — once to lend despair (innocent people were killed), and secondly for climactic uplift (the people were ultimately victorious).

More smoothly, the film depicts citizen activism against Nestle’s water-pumping in the American Midwest, which has produced alarmingly mixed results. Footage appearing over the end-credit crawl hails the efforts of a third grade anti-Ice Mountain crusader in Michigan.

Tech credits are suitable for smallscreen play.

Popular on Variety

Blue Gold: World Water Wars


Production: A Purple Turtle Films production. (International sales: Purple Turtle, Irvine, Calif.) Produced by Sam Bozzo. Executive producers, Mark Achbar, Si Litvinoff. Directed, written, edited by Sam Bozzo, based on the book "Blue Gold: The Fight to Stop the Corporate Theft of the World's Water" by Maude Barlow and Tony Clarke.

Crew: Camera (color/B&W, DV), Bozzo; music, Hannes Bertolini, Thomas Aichinger; costume designer, Peiju Liao; sound, Brett Hinton; visual effects, Dan Park. Reviewed on DVD at Vancouver Film Festival (The Ark: Elements & Animals), Oct. 3, 2008. Running time: 90 MIN. Narrator: Malcolm McDowell.

More Film

  • Beyonce Knowles'The Lion King' film premiere,

    ABC Announces Behind-the-Scenes Special for Beyoncé's 'Lion King' LP

    ABC has announced a new behind-the-scenes look into the making of Beyoncé’s “The Lion King: The Gift” LP, which is set to air September 16 on ABC at 10 p.m. EST. Titled “Beyoncé Presents: Making the Gift,” the new hour-long special will allow viewers to “experience the process” behind the “Lion King” companion album, according [...]

  • Jason Lei Howden, Samara Weaving and

    Daniel Radcliffe On Acting With Weapons Nailed To Your Hands

    How did “Guns Akimbo” director and writer Jason Lei Howden convince Daniel Radcliffe to play a character with guns nailed to his hands? Easy, he sent him the script. Radcliffe joined Howden and “Ready or Not’s” breakout star Samara Weaving in the Variety’s Toronto Film Festival studio, presented by AT&T to talk the limits of [...]

  • Box Office: It Chapter Two Maintains

    Box Office: 'It: Chapter Two' Continues International Reign With $47 Million

    Pennywise’s reign of terror hasn’t wavered: Warner Bros.’ “It Chapter Two” maintained first place on box office charts, led by another strong showing overseas. The sequel, based on Stephen King’s horror novel, generated another $47 million at the international box office for a foreign tally of $169 million. After two weeks of release, “It Chapter [...]

  • First still from the set of

    Taika Waititi’s 'Jojo Rabbit' Wins Top Prize at Toronto Film Festival Awards

    Taika Waititi’s “Jojo Rabbit” has won the coveted People’s Choice Award at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival. The honor positions the film for a potential Oscar run and bolsters its awards chances. That’s good news for Fox Searchlight, which must have been disappointed by the lackluster critical reception for the movie, a dark comedy [...]

  • Constance Wu and Jennifer Lopez star

    Box Office: 'Hustlers' Racks Up Solid $33 Million Debut, 'Goldfinch' Bombs

    “Hustlers” rolled in the Benjamins this weekend, collecting $33.2 million when it debuted in 3,250 North American theaters. Boosted by rave reviews and stellar word of mouth, “Hustlers” beat expectations and now ranks as the best start for an STX film, along with the biggest live-action opening weekend for stars Jennifer Lopez and Constance Wu. [...]

  • German Cinema Is Diverse, But Is

    German Cinema Is Varied, But Is It Too Risk Averse?

    One of the strengths of German cinema is its diversity, says Simone Baumann, managing director of the national film promotion agency German Films. As well as the three films at Toronto directed by female German helmers, there was also German filmmaker Thomas Heise’s documentary film essay “Heimat Is a Space in Time.” Then there were [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content