Into Eternity Movie Review

Subtitled "a film for the future", this artful, sober-minded documentary is assembled as a message to the next generations: "We have buried something to protect you. Don't go in here." As a film, it's extremely mannered. And truly sobering.

The salient question is what we're doing with our nuclear waste. Existing storage systems require a power supply that won't last nearly long enough. The world above ground is unstable: there have been two world wars in the last century, so a permanent solution needs to be found. Conditions in the rock won't change, so the answer is a massive underground cave in Finland that's the size of a city. Called Onkalo, which means "hiding place", it won't be completed until the 22nd century and it needs to last for 100,000 years.

Slow almost to the point of paralysis, the film covers the reason why nuclear waste exists and why it has to be disposed properly. If it spills into nature, it would create areas that were uninhabitable ("Did that happen?" Madsen asks).

The biggest fear for Onkalo is human intrusion. Would future generations interpret it as a burial ground or maybe a treasure? We can't predict the next hundred years, let alone the next thousand.

So how do we communicate to civilisations we can't imagine. Language and even alphabets are useless, but what about images like Munch's The Scream? Others argue that Onkalo should just be forgotten, because leaving a marker risks inciting curiosity. As this is so far beyond our imagination, it can't help but spark our ingenuity.

Once we adjust to the film's stilted, dreamy approach, it's a thoroughly unnerving experience. Shot and edited like a science-fiction movie, the film has a muted style that extends to the expert interviewees, glassy-eyed camera work and stark editing. It may be pretentious, but it's never academic. There's really only one point to make, but it's a mind-boggling one. Is it possible to isolate a place from humans (or any others) for this long? Think about it: the Egyptian pyramids were sealed just a few thousand years ago, never to be opened again. We know how that worked. And yet we still can't read some of their messages.

Cast & Crew

Director :

Producer : Lise Lense-Moller

Starring : , Timo Aikas, Timo Seppala, Juhani Vira, Esko Roukola, Wendla Paile, Mikael Jensen, Berit Lundqvist


Into Eternity Rating

" Good "

Rating: PG, 2010


More Michael Madsen

After all the Whining, Quentin Tarantino Will Shoot 'The Hateful Eight'

It seems as though Quentin Tarantino's dispute with Gawker hasn't put him off shooting The Hateful Eight, with sources confirming the cameras will roll in...

Quentin Tarantino Suing Gawker Over Shelved 'Hateful Eight' Script Leak

If Quentin Tarantino was angry when his latest movie script, Hateful Eight, was passed around in the film industry of Hollywood, you can bet he's...

Quentin Tarantino's Scrapped 'Hateful Eight' Would Have Been Bloody 70mm Western

Quentin Tarantino has revealed this week that he has shelved his latest movie project, Hateful Eight, after the scripts that he carefully handed out to...

Quentin Tarantino Drops 'Hateful Eight' Western After Leak. (And He Names Names)

Quentin Tarantino has chosen to cancel his latest movie after the script leaked out and gained him some unwanted attention at such an early stage...


The Pulp Fiction Cast That Never Was: Daniel Day-Lewis, Matt Dillon, Meg Ryan!

Daniel Day-Lewis was sounded out to play lead character Vincent Vega in Quentin Tarantino's classic 1994 crime-thriller Pulp Fiction, though Michael Madsen was eventually favored,...

Fallen From Grace: 2012's Ten Most Spectacular Celebrity Meltdowns

Ahh… 2012... how fondly we will look back on it. The Olympics. The end of the Twilight Saga…um… loads of celebrities going utterly bonkers, losing...

The Doors Movie Review

I figure most of us thought The Doors was plenty of movie at 138 minutes. Little did we realize that one of Oliver Stone's...

My Boss's Daughter Movie Review

There are many mysteries to be solved in this world. Who really killed JFK? How the hell do you mix up "Al Gore" and "George...