New Yorkers need no convincing that sea levels are on the rise, but for skeptics—or even the insufficiently alarmed—the collapsing glaciers in Jeff Orlowski’s doc should do the trick. (They won’t, but they ought to.) The movie’s real-life hero is James Balog, a landscape photographer whose time-lapse tableaux compress geologic eons for short attention spans. The result is dramatic evidence of crumbling ice shelves and receding glaciers, including one that shrinks by the height of the Empire State Building in a span of years. Although Chasing Ice emphasizes the physical hardships and personal strain endemic to Balog’s métier, he’s overshadowed by his own photographs: a speck beside disappearing grandeur.
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