Gore is probably one of the most famous documentary films and it Is enjoyed and respected all over the world. However the great appreciation of this film is based mostly on the message of the film and not on the way the message Is presented. The bad rhetoric of this film, moreover, should not be ignored because it weakens AY Gore’s argument.
It is clear to the viewer that AY Gore is trying to induce his audience to take action and respond to what he claims to be he apparent signs of global warming, his attempt of this, however, is not entirely successful. While AY Gore manages to establish a well constructed logos through convincing graphs and data, It Is his attempt of establishing ethos and appealing to pathos that falls short. To convey my viewpoint further I will be exemplifying and amplifying some successful and unsuccessful attempts of addressing pathos and setting up ethos AY Gore makes.
AY Gore does manage to successfully appeal to pathos, the examples are few, though, and they all have the thing In common that hey do not address any personal incidents of AY Gore’s. At the very start of the movie the viewer is met with an image of a rippling river and a sweet melody of nature sounds, a quiet piano and the soothing voice of AY Gore sounding: noon look at that river gently flowing by. You notice the leaves rustling with the wind. You hear the birds; you hear the tree frogs.
In the distance you hear a cow. You feel the grass. The mud gives a little bit on the river bank. ” This image that AY Gore paints for his viewers through both visual and auditory elements is relevant as it illustrates what will no anger be If no one responds to his message, furthermore It Is convincing because no Individual wants to see that Image disappear. On the other hand when AY Gore does address his own personal matters in attempt to establish pathos it does not work as well.
It is unfocused an irrelevant and the viewer fails to understand his intentions. One example of this Is when he mentions the death of his sister: “She was my protector and my friend at the same time. She started smoking when she was a teenager and never stopped. She died of lung cancer. That’s one of the ways you don’t want to die. The sentimentality of this is misplaced in an argument like the one AY Gore is trying to make. The last sentence is, to me, completely ridiculous. What Is one of the ways you do want to die?
It does not particularly strengthen his argument and it appears arbitrary and out of context. It seems as though he wants his viewers to pity him, which is not an effective way of appealing to pathos. Nevertheless he does try to connect this anecdote to his argument when he says: “[my father] stopped [growing tobacco]. It’s Just human nature to take time to connect the dots. I know that. But I also know that there can be a day of reckoning when you wished you had connected the dots more quickly. And although the point he is making, that we should react now, and not wait until it is too late, does strengthen his argument, the emotional context It appears In weakens it to such an extent that It becomes hollow. AY Gore should not have trouble establishing ethos, considering the fact that he Is “the former next president of America” as he puts it himself, but even so he is not 1 OFF argument, in this case focusing on the credibility of his data rather than himself.
One example of him doing this is when he presents his first graph, which is illustrating the increasing CA levels. AY Gore makes this graph a lot more convincing by telling his audience about the theory and the scientist behind these results. “l had a college professor named Roger Reveler who was the first person to have the idea to measure the amount of carbon dioxide in the earth’s atmosphere. He saw where the story was going.
After the first few years of data, he intuited what is meant, for what is yet to come. They designed the experiment in 1957. He hired Charles David Keeling who as very faithful and precise in making these measurements for decades. ” Apart from making this college professor of his trustworthy by pointing out his status as a professor, AY Gore furthermore adds to the validity of this data by presenting the fact that this professor was so remarkably intelligent that he was able to predict the results.
AY Gore even makes the assistant, Keeling, reliable by telling the audience how faithful and precise he was. This makes the audience consider the data with more credence because they have been presented with a relevant and credible resource. There are less successful attempts of establishing ethos in this documentary film, though. One of them is when AY Gore is showing pictures from the time when he was almost elected president. There are pictures of him placing his vote, he is smiling and cameras are flashing.
A news presenter announces “AY Gore is the winner of the popular vote. ” There is a map showing all the states where he has won and it says “WINNER” in capital letters next to AY Gore’s picture. All these pictures do give AY Gore credibility in the sense that he seems important, influential and also eked by the people, but this seems somewhat irrelevant and out of context; it is not clear to the audience why this status he almost gained makes him any more trustworthy or his argument any more convincing.
In conclusion AY Gore’s argument that global warming is a genuine problem which requires conformation comes across as convincing but not entirely trustworthy. This is because of the fact that while AY Gore’s set of data seems convincing to anyone, the poor attempts he has made at establishing ethos and appealing to pathos makes the viewer question the reliability of the film.