Pale Blue Dot: Humility
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Pale Blue Dot: Humility

Science  -   4 Comments
Ratings: 9.07/10 from 81 users.

The long-awaited second part of the unauthorized documentary series based on Carl Sagan's groundbreaking 1994 book has arrived. The insightful Pale Blue Dot: Humility examines how our perspective on the vastness of the cosmos has shaped our shifting sense of self through the ages.

Pieced together as a mosaic of pop culture clips, historical stills and footage, appealing animations, and Sagan's own audio commentary, the film is a rebuke against the plague of bloated self-importance, and the need to claim superiority over others for control of insignificant specks of territory. Even the field of science has not immune to these selfish pursuits.

From that foundation, Sagan's probing commentary provides a brief recap of our understanding of the heavens and the Earth throughout history. This evolution of discovery represents an epic and ongoing battle between our quest for supremacy and the reality of our insignificance. For many generations, the deeply held belief that the Earth was the center of the universe was impervious to reason or to revelations obtained through further investigation. Mainstream thinking was slow to evolve when it came to the correlation between the Earth and the Sun, for example, or the age of our planet in comparison to the universe at large. The widespread and steadfast acceptance of various theologies further clouded our capacity for reasoned judgment.

But the ceaseless canvas of the universe - adorned with hundreds of billions of galaxies, distant planets and brilliant stars - provides the ultimate lesson in humility. Our modern understanding of the universe demands a more nuanced and less conceited perspective. Yet our yearning to give special meaning to our existence is a barrier to these scientific discoveries. After all, we have to be here for a reason. As Sagan states during the course of the film, it is a battle between our quest for "deep knowledge and shallow reassurance".

It is obvious that great care went in to assembling the film, and the flow of complex information is cleanly and artfully presented. Pale Blue Dot: Humility is an affectionate representation and tribute to Sagan's trailblazing intellect.

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4 Comments / User Reviews

  1. Jeff Clark

    Who knows where we're headed. Our hubris may just be the expression of a dead end gene. Or it may lead to our altering the course of the universe.

  2. Kimberly Alison

    So well done. So beautiful.

  3. Paul Handover

    This film is fantastic! It truly puts us in our place, so to speak. A tiny, tiny inhabited planet of no particular significance in a far corner of the cosmos.

    Watch it!

    1. Maxime Daigle

      in a corner?