Capsule Review: Capitalism

What to say about Moore’s latest film? He is a master at marketing his work and the subject is so vast that no one could come close to pinning down the true causes of our economic downturn in a two-hour (plus) documentary. This film is tiring partly because the editing needed to be much tighter and more concise to get the point across. Moore saves some of his best footage for the final half hour and by this point we are spent from going through foreclosures and listening to stories of pay inequality for pilots, and then listening to a type of scam the banks have perpetrated with life insurance policies and then watching Moore being kicked out of various and sundry Wall Street banks.

He includes a scene where his own father is shown the remains of the building where he once worked in Flint. This is a poignant moment best edited out or kept as an outtake or a podcast on his web site. I’ll state again, the editing should have been tighter and more precise. Someone should have told him to lose his“babies” as they say in writer’s jargon. The babies in this case being the extraneous elements in the storyline of film or words you fall in love with that the editor has ruthlessly cut in order to make a story flow.

At times when someone has a great deal of success, (Woody Allen comes to mind), the film does not flow when the ego gets in the way and in this case, the work suffers (along with the audience).

Mr. Moore has some very good points to make and I would recommend this film as a rental to anyone who would like a better understanding of “what went wrong.” Where I diverge from his thinking is when Michael Moore equates capitalism with all that is evil. As a friend who is a devout Christian once pointed out to me, the problem is not with the acquisition of money, it is the LOVE of money.

Greed and the love of money are at the root of the evil found in some of the people shown. But calling for the abolishment of the capitalist system of government seems to be a bit off the mark. At any rate, this is not Michael Moore’s best film but it is his longest film and it is worth viewing on the small screen but not worth a trip to the theatre.

Published by

MLJ

Author of "6 Degrees of Film: The Future of Film in the Global Village", Ms. Johnson continues to blog on film and publishes a newsletter plus the Flipboard magazine 6 Degrees of Film @ the Movies. Her book is currently available on Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/Degrees-Film-Future-Global-Village/

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