The following are excerpts from the Roger Ebert review of the documentary “Windfall.”
To quote Mr. Ebert: “A documentary named ‘Windfall’ has taken the wind out of my sails. Wind turbines are a blight upon the land and yet another device by which energy companies and Wall Street, led by the always reliable Goldman Sachs, are picking the pockets of those who can least afford it.”
He goes on to say the film is set almost entirely in Meredith, N.Y., a farming area of some 2,000 people. Most of the people were once in favor of wind power. An Irish corporation named Airtricity (it should have been “atrocity”) came around offering landowners $5,000, neighbors $500 a piece, and the town a 2 percent cut of the revenue.
The town board set up an energy advisory panel, and after a year of study, it recommended the town refuse the Airtricity offer. The board rejected the panel’s finding (nothing new there). This generated a furor in Meridith, N.Y. People who were best friends for years were no longer on speaking terms.
The film shows board meetings and introduces lots of locals. It relies on the personal experiences of those individuals who talk about the relentless low-frequency thrum-thrum-thrum that seems to emanate from the very walls of their homes.
The film shows the effect on property values is devastating, and for the loss of its peace of mind, a community’s cut of the profits may be enough to pay for a pickup truck. Tax revenues drop because many flee.
Mr. Ebert wrote: “‘Windfall’ left me disheartened. I thought wind energy was something I could believe in. This film suggests it’s just another corporate flim-flam game.”
In your search engine, type “Roger Ebert’s review of movie ‘Windfall’” to get the whole story and other reviews.
Sue McGinn, Tampico
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