Capitalism: A Love Story - Movie Review

By Moira Sullivan

I know, Michael Moore is cheesy. He too often milks crying victims to make his points and his theatricality is often embarrassing. But his documentaries are commanding, and Capitalism: A Love Story has to be his best work to date. He still manipulates images and sound to drive home his points, and for that reason his documentaries are considered unscientific, but let's face it - everyone manipulates imagery and sound in the documentary medium, so this can hardly be a criticism. There are Michael Moore enthusiasts that love everything he does, and there are enemies, the people that he goes after or the people who don't believe that what he says is true, at all.
Capitalism: A Love Story is not against all capitalists, just the one percent that has extorted the American people, who work hand in hand with the government, who sit on advisory committees, and who get fat bailouts, when no one else does. And he does have the facts nailed down on this. Capitalism: A Love Story shows the interconnection between corporate greed and the decline of the American way of life, of the democratic way of life. The rags to riches stories that have made the US famous and the American Dream are his targets. Moore provides historical background into how we almost had what we could have had and that countries like Canada and Sweden already enjoy : an economic system that guarantees work, housing, education, pensions and health care. FDR was going to deliver it in 1944 but he died one year after going into his fourth term as President. Can Obama take up the slack? The documentary is inconclusive for the President had barely made in office when the doc was made. Capitalism: A Love Story shows that we no longer have a democracy but a plutocracy - rule by the wealthy, power provided by wealth. Examples are given of Americans who are starting to rebel against the greed of corporate America, Americans who stay in their foreclosed homes, who strike at factories and take over control of the corporation. And perhaps in time, Americans who will stop paying their credit card debt and establish a community banking system. Its' a more than a little threatening to the powers that be, for sure, but the powers that be depend on cooperation, people looking the the other way way and compliance. According to Michael Moore it has gone too far. When he sets up a crime scene with yellow tape on Wall St and demands that corporate executives come out of their buildings or access to make a citizen's arrest, its amazing to see what this man can do to stir up trouble, and to bring important questions full frontal into our consciousness.

For Movie Magazine this is Moira Sullivan, San Francisco

© 2009 - Moira Sullivan - Air Date: 10/08/09
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