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Review: “Volcanoes: The Fire of Creation”

You’ll see volcanic explosions, some fiery, others producing grayish white mushrooming clouds that grow ever bigger.
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“Volcanoes: The Fire of Creation” will be at the Fleet Science Center in Balboa Park.

It’s been a year for daredevils on film. First there was “Free Solo,” the documentary about Alex Honnold, the first climber to scale Yosemite’s El Capitan (3200 feet of solid granite, straight up) without ropes.

Now the Fleet Science Center offers the California premiere of the IMAX film “Volcanoes: The Fires of Creation,” which stars Carsten Peter, whose specialty is climbing down volcano craters in order to photograph them. You’ve seen his exploits and his photos if you’re a “National Geographic” reader.

Don’t get me wrong. This isn’t a travelogue; it’s science. The planet earth was born of fire, and volcanic energy shaped the continents, ecosystems and wildlife habitats we have today. There are more than 500 active volcanoes around the world, and the Ring of Fire (stretching from the Pacific Indies northward and across the Pacific Ocean to the West Coast of the Americas) contains 425 of them.

You’ll see several on this film: Vanuatu in the South Pacific, which sports a lava lake; Dallol in Ethiopia, the hottest inhabited place on the planet. And Kilauea on the island of Hawaii, which just months ago produced enough lava to cover Manhattan two feet deep.

You’ll see the remains of Pompeii, destroyed by a volcano in 70 A.D. and a major tourist attraction to this day. And the Serengeti plain in Africa, whose volcanic soil supports the much wildlife.

Most of all you’ll see volcanic explosions, some fiery, others producing grayish white mushrooming clouds that grow ever bigger.

And if you’re like me, you’ll leave with a greater appreciation of and respect for the natural world. And Carsten Peter.

“Volcanoes: The Fire of Creation” will be at the Fleet Science Center for some months.

The schedule changes, so check HERE for scheduling and times.