Thursday, October 15, 2009

Capitalism: A Love Story (Rhoades)

“Capitalism” Is Worth The Price of a Ticket
Reviewed by Shirrel Rhoades

Michael Moore’s films earn more money than any other documentaries. So I guess that makes him a capitalist.

In fact, his current film is called “Capitalism: A Love Story.” It’s currently raking in the bucks at the Tropic Cinema.

Contrary to the film’s title, Moore doesn’t seem to be in love with capitalism (even though it’s been very, very good to him). Go figure.

“Well, yes, I guess it’s ironic if I were saying it,” he comments on the film’s title. “But it’s actually a true statement because it’s about the wealthy who love their money – and they not only love their money, they love our money too.”

Known as “the most feared filmmaker in America,” Moore’s previous documentaries have taken hard (and satiric) looks at social issues. His first film was “Roger & Me,” where he tried to chase down Roger Smith, then-CEO of General Motors, to confront him about the plant closings in Flint, Michigan.

Later films ranged from the Academy Award-winning “Bowling For Columbine,” a look at violence in schools, to “Sicko,” an indictment of America’s healthcare system. And, of course, his Bush-bashing “Fahrenheit 9/11” got him lots of attention.

Now he takes on the financial world. Focusing on the 2008 financial crisis and the resulting Wall Street bailout, he goes after both the government and big banks.

With Michael Moore’s usual hijinks, we see him standing in front of a bank, holding an open bag, demanding, “We’re here to get the money back for the American people. I’ve got more bags. The ten billion probably won’t fit in here.”

And he shows up “to make a citizen’s arrest of the board of directors of AIG.”

He’s concerned about the bailout money. And maybe he should be. When he confronts Elizabeth Warren, the congressional oversight officer, he asks, “Where’s our money.” Incredibly, she replies, “I don’t know.”

He charges, “By spending just a few million dollars to buy Congress, Wall Street’s getting billions.”

So if not capitalism, what system does Moore recommend? “Well, I'm not an economist, so I don’t know. I’m kind of bored with the discussion of capitalism versus socialism – it’s the 21st century, we need to come up with an economic model that’s best for us right now.”

Moore has urged that no one who sees the movie should use actual currency to do so, but instead barter for tickets in order to help erode the capitalist system. Even so, the Tropic prefers cash.
[from Solares Hill]

1 comment:

free2be2cool said...

This movie review seems to be more about the filmmaker, not the film. Although it's true that documentaries are highly personal achievements and Michael Moore is one (rather) big personality in that field, I was happily surprised by the level of research and fact-based entertainment "Capitalism" provided. One thing you can always count on in a MM film is to laugh. Sometimes feel upset, even. But the level of outrage I experienced at the closing really surprised me.

"Dead peasants" aside, watching the workers in Chicago take control of their factory was an enormously inspiring, TRUE story which we could all hold onto for comfort in these trying times.

As for MM being conflicted over his profiting from capitalism, it's important to recognize the difference between owning the means of production and subverting them. MM is impishly aware of this and exploits his "status" among the exhaulted with the ferocity of a bear protecting it's young. His choice is to make more movies that will blow your mind, not blow his own mind on new toys.

Michael Moore is a kind of Pied Pipper for human rights. If you want a better world to live in, watch this movie & more important, talk about it with your friends (and family, if it's safe).

See you at the revolution!