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Fire of Love

DOCUMENTARY | This film about two French volcanologists will remind Christians of the grandeur of God’s creation


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<em>Fire of Love</em>
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Rated PG
➤ Theaters, then Disney+

During the 1970s and ’80s, French volcanologists Katia Krafft and her husband Maurice traveled to volcanoes in Zaire, Colombia, and Indonesia, their camera lingering over lava explosions and billowing smoke while they cheerfully tread near rivers of lava.

A new documentary, Fire of Love, tells their story. The movie uses the Kraffts’ archival footage of their volcanic explorations, highlighting their appetite for danger.

The 93-minute film, directed by Sara Dosa, doesn’t explain the geological or chemical intricacies behind volcanoes, nor does it reveal much about the personal lives of its two main characters. Instead, it draws viewers closer to the wonder and terror of the earth’s movements through remarkable footage, giving us a sense of the Kraffts’ fatal attraction to volcanoes.

The movie reveals in its first few minutes that the Kraffts ­perished in 1991 while photographing a volcano in Japan, but their story unfolds with suspense as Maurice, in particular, edges close to death, at one point ­rowing a rubber boat across an acid-filled lake.

The duo’s footage has a self-aware, travelogue quality, in part because they used their scientific work to write books and make educational films. They warned communities of the dangers of volcanoes, a warning that helped officials avert disaster in 1991 when Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines erupted.

“Human pursuits of power feel vain next to the power of the earth,” the narrator says. The film will remind Christians of the grandeur of God’s creation, in both its fine detail and raw power.

—Max Belz works on WORLD’s development team as a major gifts officer

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