Who Killed the Electric Car?

Al Gore's lecture on global warming, An Inconvenient Truth, is doing boffo business this summer, so there's hope for filmmaker Chris Paine's compelling, fighting-mad documentary about what happened to the EV1, the electric car (no gas, no oil, no polluting carbon-dioxide exhaust) that General Motors leased to a few lucky California customers in 1996, only to mash its fleet into scrap metal in the Arizona desert six years later. Though Martin Sheen is the film's narrator, it's not just the political lefties who can guess the culprits behind the plot to take the EV1 on its last ride. Part conspiracy thriller, part cautionary fable, here's an activist movie that might actually raise consciousness and do some good. Let's hope it's not crushed on its way to the multiplex.

From The Archives Issue 1004: July 13, 2006