Review | The four-star volcano documentary Fire of Love brings goosebumps and tears to the eyes

Assembled from decades-old archival footage, Fire of Love is more spectacular than effects spectacles made with insane amounts of money.

Fire of LovePremiere: 19 August 2022
Original title: Fire of Love
Directed by: Sara Dosa
Screenplay: Sara Dosa
Starring: Miranda July, Katia Krafft & Maurice Krafft
Length: 93 minutes
Age limit: K7

Married couple Katia and Maurice Krafft are wrong. The two claim that they are not interested in film as an art form. According to their story, the volcanologist couple is only interested in volcanoes. They say they would never leave craters and lava flows if they could live on nothing but rocks.

Volcanologists don’t care about other people. The teammates are indifferent, according to them, only eruptions and doing science are important.

The material filmed by Maurice and Katia over two decades says something completely different. The duo financed their pioneering research that began in the 1970s with TV documentaries, which are much more than just educational films. The material reflects the knowledge and appreciation for the art of cinema.

Fire of Love

Although, according to their own words, the married couple did not care or knew how to show their feelings to each other, yes Sara Dosan directed and written Fire of Love -documentary is full of love and deep empathy.

Dosa has assembled a work from abundant archival material that does not even try to tell the whole truth. It is his interpretation, a tribute to the peculiar life of French scientific celebrities and pioneers. The film pushes the romanticized myth of the Krafft duo in a good way.

Fire of Love is a love story with three sides. The Kraffts only loved each other and volcanoes.

The documentary shows breathtakingly beautiful pictures of the eruptions. Maurice and Katia are in constant danger to their lives by the lava flows. However, more dangerous than the orange-red molten rock are the gray eruptions, where giant boulders rain down from the sky.

Fire of Love

The love story ended already in June 1991 in the eruption of the Unzen volcano in Japan, where Maurice and Katia died together with 43 other people.

The eruption was gray.

In the film, Maurice ponders his possible death in the course of his work. He does not mention his wife. Director Dosa unearths two special characters from the archive material who are much more than passionate scientists. The Kraffts are even childishly enthusiastic, insanely daring, but also constantly aware of the surrounding danger.

The alternative culture of the 1960s affects the duo’s worldview. Science doesn’t have to be extremely serious or boring, although not everything is just peace and love. Adversity and depression plague even extremely passionate people. The mind is drawn down, for example, by being disappointed with those in power who do not believe the warnings of scientists.

The evacuation plan falls on deaf ears and more than 20,000 people die in Colombia.

Fire of Love

The narrator of Fire of Love works better as a director and actor Miranda July. His sighingly calm speaking style fits the atmosphere of a fairy tale-like narrative.

I watched the film for the first time in January during the Sundance film festivals from the couch at home. The multi-interpretable deep story with brutally handsome pictures gave me goosebumps even when staring at the TV screen. Naturally, the documentary made an even bigger impression on the giant screen of the movie theater.

Fire of Love is a poetically beautiful story about the smallness of human life, and the love and passion that literally changed the world.


Rating: 4/5
“Fire of Love makes an impression just with its handsome pictures of erupting volcanoes. The multi-cause film dives much deeper into humanity than the usual nature documentary”

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