It’s hard to imagine a more hostile environment than the Arctic. A block of ice at the top of globe the North Pole is hundreds of miles from the nearest landmass. Through winter it regularly posts temperatures 35 degrees below zero. And constantly shifting ocean currents makes it impossible to build a permanent structure for long-term habitation. Though, few people on Earth would ever want to live there. But the subject of a new documentary film currently in production calls this frozen wasteland home. Throughout a long career as a polar explorer and as a lifetime resident of the most frigid communities on the planet it’s safe to say that Lonnie Dupre loves the cold.
Cold Love follows the life and times of a modern-day adventurer with a passion for travel through the icy expanse of the northern most regions of the planet. The documentary film directed by Deia Schlosberg compiles the collective footage of Dupre’s expeditions shot over two decades as he traverses the island of Greenland by kayak and dogsled, attempts to summit Mount McKinley in winter and takes a circuitous route across the Arctic Ocean to the North Pole. Born and raised along the shores of Lake Superior where he still lives today, Dupre has adopted a way of life that demands constant contact with dangerously low temperatures in cold weather environments that require him to apply all of his skill and training just to survive.
“I think he’s just most at home when he’s pushing himself in these cold places,” Schlosberg said in an interview. “He grew up off the land in northern Minnesota. I think he just fell in love with the lifestyle and the huge highs and lows that go along with that.”
Dupre is a remarkable character who faces the dire circumstances of polar exploration with grace and humility. By placing himself into these incredibly harsh settings he brings to the audience a degree humanity that reduces the vast scale of the seemingly endless void of the Arctic tundra down to the perspective that an average person can hopefully understand and appreciate. As we enter deeper into this period of global climate change Dupre offers us the opportunity to see in vivid detail the exquisite beauty of our northern frontiers and what we stand to lose as our planet warms to melt the polar ice cap once and for all.
“What really appeals to me about this story is it’s a way to look at climate change in a more up beat and positive way,” Schlosberg said. “Not that what this film will show bodes well for the fate of the planet, it’s not quite such a downer as we look at the receding ice caps. I hope that the take-away from this story will be that if people can persevere through expeditions like these that Lonnie and his partners have done hopefully we can apply that same kind of energy and enthusiasm toward finding solutions.”
Schlosberg aims to have Cold Love ready for distribution by Fall 2014. Hopefully with the successful outcome a crowd-source campaign on Kickstarter she’ll raise the funds necessary to complete the final edit and sound mix. In this compelling story of adventure Dupre delivers an equally important message that will likely encourage audiences to passionately embrace the coldest regions of our planet. If we fail to protect them from the ravages of climate change there’s no telling how long they will last.
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