Katia and Maurice Krafft loved two things — each other and volcanoes. For two decades, the daring French volcanologist couple roamed the planet, chasing eruptions and documenting their discoveries. Ultimately, they lost their lives in a 1991 volcanic explosion, leaving a legacy that forever enriched our knowledge of the natural world. Director Sara Dosa and the filmmaking team fashion a lyrical celebration of the intrepid scientists’ spirit of adventure, drawing from the Kraffts’ spectacular archive. FIRE OF LOVE tells a story of primordial creation and destruction, following two bold explorers as they venture into the unknown, all for the sake of love.
KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Eshaan M. comments, “A superb film for nature-lovers and a great film to study for budding documentarians, Fire of Love explores a dynamic relationship between volcanologists, with beautiful editing and archival footage; however, its pace somewhat undermines the beauty of the film.” See his complete review below.
Fire of Love
By Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16
A superb film for nature-lovers and a great film to study for budding documentarians, Fire of Love explores a dynamic relationship between volcanologists, with beautiful editing and archival footage; however, its pace somewhat undermines the beauty of the film.
In Fire of Love, we are introduced to Katia and Maurice Krafft, Alsatian French volcanologists and spouses. From the beginning, it is evident that Maurice is the one who jumps in with abandon, and Katia is the one who takes calculated, measured risks. Through footage and some interviews, director Sara Dosa shows the Kraffts in their daring exploits, filming, photographing and recording volcanoes—and getting within feet of lava flows.
The National Geographic documentary team behind this film has evidently spent a sizable portion of time collecting stunning natural footage and archival video and sound to tell the story of this legendary duo. They team successfully assemble a great audiovisual gallery…. But the film needs something more. There are times where inserted music and natural footage seems to take over the storyline and bring things to a halt. We get heartwarming glimpses of the couple’s dynamic with one another—for the majority of the Fire of Love, we see the Kraffts at work, discussing their pursuits—but it would have been great to see more of them talking to one another, reflecting one-on-one. The film seems to waver between their relationship and their work, without discussing the intersection of both very clearly. For example, a question I wish was answered better by the film was how the two maintained a work-life balance. The most compelling, moving part of Fire of Love is the couple’s blazing end—they died in a 1991 volcanic explosion in Japan—and it was captured with such deep emotion that I was left speechless.
Fire of Love is all about companionship, teamwork, and following your passion. There are of course some daring stunts performed in the film—the Kraffts, after all, are in a dangerous line of work.
I give Fire of Love 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Fire of Love is available in theaters now.
Key words: Sara Dosa, Shane Boris, Ina Fichman, Greg Boustead, Jessica Harrop, Carolyn Bernstein, Josh Braun, Ben Braun, Katia Krafft, Maurice Krafft, volcanoes, French volcanologist, eruptions, scientist, primordial creation.