By: Joe Dreshar
From FilmScene‘s website:
“Just in time for election season, America’s favorite political provocateur, Michael Moore “Bowling for Columbine,” “Fahrenheit 9/11″), is back with his new film, WHERE TO INVADE NEXT. Honored by festivals and critics groups alike, the film is an expansive, hilarious, and subversive comedy in which the Academy Award-winning director confronts the most pressing issues facing America today and finds solutions in the most unlikely places. Moore has returned with an epic movie that’s unlike anything he has done before–an eye-opening call to arms to capture the American Dream and restore it in, of all places, America.”
Joe writes: Michael Moore is not without his flaws. He’s biased and sometimes disingenuous in editing and interview and he tries to hide behind comedy. He’s politically charged which turns off 50% of the population and his faults as a filmmaker and documentarian can turn off even the most liberal of audiences.
That said, I don’t dislike him or his films. Bowling for Columbine, in particular, I think is a good film (full disclosure, it’s been more than a decade since I’ve seen it so I can’t guarantee it holds up to the test of time). So, put me more on the ‘pro’ side than the ‘con.’ Not staunchly pro, but I agree with his politics so it helps. It’s the editing and the humor that can turn need off moreso than the politics.
But that has nothing to do with this movie.
‘Where to Invade Next’ is worth seeing. No, he doesn’t address the differences between the nations he “invades” and the US, which may help explain why the things he is claiming for the US are not already implemented or may not be able to be implemented. Or why, politically, we may not want it.
That said, his overall thesis is convincing. You will leave the theater wondering if we can truly believe in American exceptionalism when other nations seem to excel and provide for their people in ways that exceed our own. You will find yourself wondering if liberal ideals are truly at odds with capitalism. That if we only adopted a few of the ideas presented, that if we might not be able to be better than we are.
And it’s funny whenever Moore plants a US flag is some poor Slovene’s office and he has to hold it in place as Moore walks dramatically away.
It may not change your mind if you disagree, but this is better than Fahrenheit 9/11 or Sicko or Capitalism: A Love Story politically, so give it a shot.
The movie is running at FilmScene in Iowa City through Thursday. Catch it while you can!