French glaciologist Claude Lorius is the person who in the 1970s first established a connection between melting icecaps and global warming. Now a spry octogenarian and the focus of this bio-doc, Lorius is in reflective mood as we see him wandering near Swiss glaciers, and hear his wise words sonorously delivered (in French) by actor Michel Papineschi.
Meanwhile, his personal film archive takes us back through half a century of polar missions, when he braved temperatures of -50C to discover that air trapped inside compacted snowflakes revealed the ambient temperature on the day they first fell. Deep drilling for ice samples going back hundreds of thousands year therefore provided an overall graph for the Earth’s rising and falling temperatures. It’s all a bit TV science doc, but engrossing and timely nonetheless.