“It’s beautiful, but it’s disgusting.”
That’s a quote from an activist looking at footage from a special camera that can detect carbon emissions from cars and trucks, even people, depicted in clouds of brilliant blue. It is beautiful to look at, but, of course, sobering as to its effects on climate change.
That quote could also serve as a mantra for several recent environmental documentaries, including “Chasing Ice” and the new “Racing Extinction,” which played at the Sundance Film Festival and now has its premiere on the Discovery Channel this Wednesday at 8 p.m. CST. This new wave of films wants to make environmental films that aren’t just educational and enraging but poignant, exciting — and even beautiful.