For a film that takes on the big question of what the post-Deepwater Horizon oil industry means to the people of the bayou and beyond, The Great Invisible, which opens in limited release on October 29, is remarkably short on denunciation of Big Oil. Rather, the film explores not only the cost of the spill, but why a similar disaster is likely to happen again: because of us.
“There’s a whole factory under the Gulf of Mexico that powers a lot of our lives, and we’re all connected to it, and we don’t realize it,” Margaret Brown, the film’s director, said in March at the South by Southwest (SXSW) film festival, where The Great Invisibletook top prize among documentaries. As the film shows, 3,500 oil platforms currently stand off the Gulf Coast, some connected to 20 wells each. None of them are any safer, necessarily, than Deepwater Horizon.