American Blackout | Review
National Geographic takes a look at how prepared the United States is in case a cyberattack takes down the country’s power grid in “American Blackout.” This dramatization is presented in a documentary style that calls into question many of the safeguards the US has in place and how effective they would be. It’s almost a disaster film in the same style as “The Blair Witch Project,” but instead of found footage, it’s tries to employ a “fact-based” narrative.
While I understand it’s taking the narrative to extremes to call out an obvious flaw in the American power grid, this was still hard to sit through. I don’t like documentaries like this and I like a dramatization in a documentary style like this even less. This message would’ve been more effective in either an actual documentary or a regular movie with a true feature-length narrative. Simply put, the message was completely lost on me because I couldn’t be swayed in the story. I finished watching and I was neither any more educated or entertained than I was when I started watching it.
The most intriguing part of the entire documentary-dramatization, to me, was seeing Kari Lake as a news anchor. She made a lot of waves with her recent run for Governor of Arizona and is a polarizing figure for many American viewers. I know many people who will love to see her in this and others who will hate to see her. But I was so unimpressed with anything else in this program that I started watching any clips where she appeared to see if I could see any hints of her political aspirations while she was serving as a news anchor. That was more interesting to me than this was.
I’m disappointed mostly because the subject matter is very important and could’ve been presented in a way that grabbed my attention. Given the failures of power grids around the United States during weather events, I wouldn’t be surprised if a cyber attack took down the entire grid. That’s a story I want to see played out in a fictional film. That’s a topic I want to see tackled in a documentary. This is just a skippable presentation of something that should be intriguing and educational.
Rating: 1 star
What did you think of “American Blackout?”