City Dark, The

Graham Eley

A greater risk of cancer amongst night-shift workers and an expanding concealment of killer asteroids are amongst the potential repercussions of a largely overlooked ‘artificial light’ pollution of our night sky according to this intriguing feature documentary from Ian Cheney, best known as star, co-writer and cinematographer of the dangerous food exposé, King Corn.


Quirky viewpoints, scientific observation and personal evidence combine as food for thought for further investigation rather than being a compelling argument, as such, but it is Cheney’s lyrical, nostalgic and surprisingly philosophical contextualisation that sets it apart from many of the other environmental documentaries competing for festival slots and theatrical screenings.


Stunning images of artificial illumination above New York, Chicago and other major US cities take on an unsettling poetic beauty that belies its deadly sting in the tale.


Sparkling heavens over Arizona’s Sky Village provides the antidote as one of America’s remaining locations that still has access to the full awe-inspiring universal view.


Astrophysicist, Neil deGrasse Tyson, turns philosopher with a persuasive theory that the obscure night sky is ‘resetting’ our egos with a return to Man’s more primitive perception that it lies at the centre of the universe.


And Cheney laments the loss of childhood wonder, recollecting his own early days and homemade telescope in rural Maine.


A superb atmospheric soundtrack from The Fisherman Three and Ben Fries, which won a special jury award at SXSW, adds to the sense of a filmic tone poem with disconcerting asides.  None more so than the sight of disorientated newborn turtles following city lights to almost certain death rather than having the stars guide them to the safety of the sea; an undeniable interference with nature fully exposed.


This is Cheney’s second feature documentary in the director’s chair following the Greening of Southie four years ago.buy female viagrabuy female viagra australiafemale viagra for salebuy female viagra ukwomens viagra onlinecheap female viagrageneric female viagra


  • Year: 2011
  • Country: USA
  • Filmmaker: Ian Cheney
  • Screenwriter: Ian Cheney
  • Producer: Ian Cheney
  • Cinematographer: Taylor Gentry and Ian Cheney
  • Editor: Ian Cheney and Frederick Shanahan
  • Cast: N/A
  • Duration: 83 mins


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