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The War On Democracy [DVD]

Christopher Martin , John Pilger    Suitable for 12 years and over   DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
Price: 7.76 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Product details

  • Directors: Christopher Martin, John Pilger
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English, Spanish
  • Subtitles: English, Portuguese
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 12
  • Studio: Lions Gate Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 4 Feb 2008
  • Run Time: 96 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000UYBOVA
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 11,758 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

From Amazon.co.uk

John Pilger’s documentaries aren’t a place to find sensationalism, cheap tactics or irrelevancies. As The War On Democracy demonstrates, Pilger instead takes a deathly serious subject, and while his work isn’t bereft of politic leanings, presents his findings to his audience in a grown up, intelligent manner.

In The War On Democracy, he looks at the political tactics of America over the past decades, homing in on Latin America and the impact that ongoing strategic American political decisions have had. Throughout the course of the documentary, Pilger gets access to relevant subjects, and charts the backlash in Latin America too.

The subject matter of The War On Democracy is clearly emotive, and it’s inevitable perhaps that Pilger’s stance isn’t wholly impartial. His film, however, is very strong. Directed by Chris Martin, it’s an engrossing, studiously put-together picture, that can’t help but emote a reaction from those who sit through it. One or two of the interviewees, in particular, are all but certain to provoke.

As a piece of filmmaking, The War On Democracy continues the rich vein of quality that the documentary genre has been enjoying over the past few years. That it’s also likely to wind its audience up one way or the other is also, surely, an even stronger reason to recommend it. --Jon Foster

Product Description

Award winning journalist John Pilger examines the role of Washington in America's manipulation of Latin American politics during the last 50 years, and how these same policies are now being used in the Middle East.


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
44 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'What right do they have?...' 16 Mar 2008
Format:DVD
Since watching John Pilger's first DVD collection, I have been eagerly waiting for this cinema documentary, The War On Democracy, to be released on DVD as well. I have just finished watching it several times, and while this film is not without its weak points, I can honestly say the wait has been worth it.

I got my money's worth during Pilger's confrontation with a former CIA chief, whose arrogance concerning the loss of innocent lives in Latin America is shocking, no matter how many times you watch it. When was the last time you saw a journalist (any journalist!) confront the CIA face-to face and demand to know: 'What right do you have to overthrow other countries' governments?'. Pilger does exactly that in this movie, and for me, this DVD paid for itself in those few moments alone.

There is stunning photography of the South American landscape in this film as well, the sheer beauty of which takes your breath away, and interviews with common people in Latin America whose courage is nothing short of inspiring. In one emotional scene, a priest in Bolivia breaks down and cries on camera as he remembers the government's massacre of innocent people. In another segment, we hear the horrific testimony of an American nun who was abducted and tortured in Guatemala in the late 1980s -- torture that she says was overseen by a fellow United States citizen. These are stories of common people that must be told, and yet the mainstream media companies whose so-called 'news' we watch, read and listen to every day continue to treat such people as invisible or as untouchables. Again, Pilger does a great public service in sharing their stories with us.

The weak points that I found in this movie concern Chile in particular.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The War on Democracy--essential viewing 1 Jan 2010
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
"You use virtually any method necessary to get what you want", asserts Major Joseph Blair, instructor in the early 1980s at the School of the Americas, Georgia, where the military personnel of US-sponsored Latin American dictatorships were "taught interrogation and torture techniques", the manuals now in the public domain.

"Torture?" asks Pilger.

"And killing. If there's someone you don't want, you kill them ... you assassinate them with one of your death squads."

From the gunning down of unarmed mourners at a funeral in El Salvador, through the US-backed campaign against the indigenous Mayan people of Guatemala (described by the United Nations as 'genocide'), the systematic massacre in one Salvadorian village of at least 200 defenceless women and children ("You could hear their screams for their mothers and fathers", testifies a survivor), to the gang rape of nuns orchestrated by a man identified as an American national in Guatemala's torture chambers, John Pilger's well researched narrative documents the United States' rampage, through its clients and proxies, of subversion, suppression, plunder, and murder throughout the Latin American continent since 1945, brutally overthrowing democratically elected governments in Guatemala, Venezuela, Chile, Nicaragua, and elsewhere.

"Is that OK to overthrow a democratically elected government?" asks Pilger of Duane Clarridge, head of the CIA's Latin American division in the early 1980s.

"It depends on what your national security interests are", comes Clarridge's response.

Questioned on the carnage wrought on the civilian populations of America's client dictatorships in Latin America, Clarridge peremptorily replies: "That's just tough ... and if you don't like it, lump it.
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79 of 83 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential viewing for all 17 Sep 2007
Format:DVD
I watched this documentary on TV recently, and I have to say it was simply one of the best programs I have ever had the priviledge to see. John Pilger's gift is to take the truth and hold it up to your face so starkly that only a moron or corrupt politician could fail to be moved. Indeed I was almost moved to tears by parts of the program, and also angered that so much evil, and that's not too strong a word, is being done in our name by governments who drip feed us pap and misinformation.

I have been watching DVDs of Noam Chomsky recently too, and he tells of similar injustices meted out by the West on those less fortunate. I would urge everyone with a conscience to wake the hell up, stop watching SKY news which re-runs trivia every 15 minutes, and look around you. I have even started watching Al Jazeera for the news, and it has so much more depth and scope to proper issues that it boggles the mind. One of the major points Pilger makes is that the media are privately owned, and the garbage we get fed to us is simply to mis-inform and lie to us. Your government is lying to you every day people!

Pilger's books and documentaries dont make for a comfortable evening's viewing or reading. He strips away the facade of our supposed decency in the West and makes us examine the true extent of our leaders' underhand, duplicitous and evil doings in the name of supposed "democracy". It's all a lie, and as any history student will tell you, if you tell a big enough lie, people will believe it.

Hugo Chavez comes across as a good, decent well-intentioned man. He speaks with humility and good grace. Compare that with the lying, draft-dodging, incompetent, war-mongering, ingrate currently residing in the Whitehouse. Christ! The times they are a-changing.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars The war on democracy
The War on Democracy is a must-see documentary made by left-wing journalist and film-maker John Pilger. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Stuart
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A+
Published 1 month ago by Rosco
5.0 out of 5 stars A Real Eye-Opener
Of the films by John Pilger which I have seen, 'The War On Democracy' is my favourite - because I think it is the one that best distils both his skills as a documentary film-maker... Read more
Published 10 months ago by Oliver Twist
5.0 out of 5 stars worth the watch
this dvd shows and proves how bad the yanks actually are. it goes in depth on how the yanks took latin america and how they implace the new dictators who the yanks actully want in... Read more
Published 12 months ago by gary brightman
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Revealing
Should be required viewing by all voters. And, of course by all politicians! It is a distressing judgement of our times.
Published 14 months ago by R. N. Mayes
5.0 out of 5 stars A must view!
This documentary opened my eyes to the way that power still ocntrols our world. Nothing has changed since the days of the expanding Roman Empire. Read more
Published 14 months ago by sue brock
5.0 out of 5 stars Disturbing and powerful
Just watched this documentary and was deeply disturbed and saddened by its contents. An insightful and powerful indictment against USA and Western secret foreign policies. Read more
Published 16 months ago by Sam Marten
5.0 out of 5 stars Everyone should watch this film
I had no particular interest in or knowledge of Latin American politics, but boy was I gripped by this film. Read more
Published 17 months ago by Nicholas Taimitarha
5.0 out of 5 stars We all should look.
We all should look at documentaries such as this. Crafted, daring and informed - only through a better understanding by the public at large of just how corrupt the western empire... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Q Craven
4.0 out of 5 stars US involvement in south america
i found this to be informative on the subject of US foriegn policy in central and south america. it is a little bit "talky" and could of benfited from more documented footage, but... Read more
Published 21 months ago by Mr. M. Bounds
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