[The 90’s raw: Biosphere 2]

Raw tape for the award-winning series The 90's. For the first part of the tape, Dee Dee Halleck takes a road trip to Biosphere 2 in Tucson, AZ with Joel Kovel, psychoanalyst and radical writer, and their daughter, Molly Kovel. Once there, they interview people touring the facility. Following Kovel's commentary, there is unrelated footage of a Martin Luther King, Jr. Day parade.

00:00Copy video clip URL Nature footage of a trail, where Molly and Joel Kovel examine bark on a tree. Joel Kovel discusses the destruction of Indian dwellings in the area.

03:22Copy video clip URL Shots from the car of animals grazing in a field, and then shots of the countryside as they drive.

06:11Copy video clip URL Molly pets a horse or a mule through a fence.

07:02Copy video clip URL Shots as they drive through a town, where it is raining.

08:43Copy video clip URL Shots of an orange and a map of the Southwest, and then more shots of driving on the highway. A road sign reads, “Biosphere 2 Conference Center 2 Miles.”

10:40Copy video clip URL They arrive at Biosphere 2. A man is interviewed outside, who says he is here with his family. [the tape cuts out]

12:03Copy video clip URL A man is interviewed, and says he thinks the existence of the Biosphere will lead to more environmental awareness, and that he would like to live in the Biosphere.

13:08Copy video clip URL Another man, from Tucson says that Biosphere is generally believed to be a “worthwhile effort.”

14:03Copy video clip URL A man with a child is interviewed, and says he just went on the tour, which he describes as “informative.” “The implications will be useful in making some improvements in our environment and the way that we treat our world.” He thinks it was a worthwhile detour on his trip.

16:45Copy video clip URL A woman is interviewed, and she says this is her second visit, and she is “fascinated” by the concept, and “eventually we’re going to need something like this to survive.” She thinks it is a “small part of the solution.”

19:01Copy video clip URL A college student is interviewed, and says she enjoyed it, though she wouldn’t like to be a Biospherian. Biology does not interest her very much, but she likes the idea that people have lived there for two years.

21:15Copy video clip URL A woman says that she would like to live in the Biosphere because of the cooperation required “like the old days.” She talks about the food, and how they take turns cooking. She thinks the Biosphere is an “excellent model” but it would not work in real life because “people are too mean.” She thinks that the effort is worth every penny.

23:56Copy video clip URL Two couples are interviewed, and said that their trip has “broadened [their] view of the future.” They are “intrigued” by the scientific aspects. They discuss recent changes in education, and the interviewer thinks that ecology was much more emphasized in the past, whereas nowadays the focus is on energy conservation. They go on to discuss the cost of the biosphere, and the implications for the future.

30:32Copy video clip URL Shots of a tour.

31:34Copy video clip URL A man is interviewed in a roadside cafe. This man thinks that the country is doing better than it used to be, and his friend jokes about the state of the world and the next election, saying that the Japanese are “better businessmen” so he would vote for one. The first man thinks the Biosphere is a good experiment and it’s a “nice way of thinking” and could be especially useful in space. He says he was in the army for 36 years, and then he goes on to talk about the Cold War. He thinks they did a good job in the war, but they didn’t go far enough. Then they discuss unemployment and agriculture in Arizona, and the need for a national health care system.

43:12Copy video clip URL Shots of the cafe menu, clock and exterior.

44:22Copy video clip URL Shots of two girls and a man playing violin.

45:10Copy video clip URL Joel Kovel gives his commentary on the Biosphere project. Compiled from three takes, he says: “The Biosphere 2, it’s like Noah’s Ark, except instead of the flood, it’s the social plague that science is trying to save us from… It’s also very American. I mean, this country was formed by a lot of people with Utopian ideals… Wouldn’t it be nice if instead of this being a gigantic spectacle of liberated technology where people watch from the outside, we focused on rebuilding the earth in a way that draws in everybody and allows everyone to learn how to do it themselves in a democratic way, instead of having the magnificent experts do it for them.”

49:10Copy video clip URL Unrelated footage from a Martin Luther King, Jr. Parade in San Diego, California, in 1992. There are many drummers, dancers, and people in costume.

01:04:57Copy video clip URL End of tape.

 

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