Directed by Michael Moore
So, I’ve been a huge fan Michael Moore’s since 1994. I was a high school kid, bored for the summer, and I discovered Moore’s news magazine show TV Nation. I became an ardent fan. In university, I discovered his full body of work through friends who were fellow fans. When Bowling for Columbine came to Kumagaya, I was first in line. I bought it on DVD as soon as I came home, and it had the rare distinction of being a film that even my father enjoyed. So, when I heard that his next film would be focused on the Bush administration, I was rather excited. Fahrenheit 9/11 got the rare honour of being my annual birthday movie.
It’s kind of hard to do a plot summary for a documentary. The film opens with a recap of the 2000 election, with the too-close-to-call results in Florida, the endless recounts, and finally the Supreme Court decision to end the whole fiasco and declare Bush the winner. Then, we flash forward to September 11, 2001, and what happened afterwards. We are then presented to all kinds of segments, raging from Bush’s ties to Saudi Arabian money, the Patriot Act and how it’s been used and abused, and ultimately, the War in Iraq. As always, there are segments that just really stand out for me. Moore’s “shocking” discovery that most congressmen don’t read all the acts before they vote for them, Moore being hassled by the Secret Service for hanging around the Saudi embassy, the underfunding of state troopers in Oregon. And, when one pro-Bush supporter tries to shut down Moore’s “staging” of a conversation between an anti-war protester and a mother whose son was killed in Iraq.
Reflecting on this film, I do think that Bowling for Columbine was a better film. If you read any newspapers or watched any news, then you’ll realize that Moore really doesn’t present any new information. But, Moore has a very stylish way of presenting the information. It’s entertaining, funny, tragic, and gets you thinking. While this may be eye-opening and stunning to some, it was simply a good movie for me. However, it did achieve the rarest and most stunning of feats: Dad wants it on DVD.