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32 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Time to wake up!
Thanks to Michael Moore we have another brilliant documentary that highlights more injusticies in the political world.
The film is focussed and to the point, with snippits of humour thrown in. Anyone failing to follow this movie is clearly not concentrating!
Of course all of the salient points are backed up by alot of evidence, which is especially disheartening...
Published on 24 May 2010 by H. Fryer

versus
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good message, but hard going
I was looking forward to watching this documentary because it had been recommended to me by a trusted friend. I found it very hard going - even though I agreed with the message and with what was ostensibly an angle of "the ills of modern capitalism" (or should we say - an amalgamation of modern feudalism and extreme capitalism?). It was not so much the documentary's style...
Published on 6 Oct 2011 by SpookyPuppy


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32 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Time to wake up!, 24 May 2010
By 
H. Fryer (London UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Capitalism - A Love Story [DVD] (DVD)
Thanks to Michael Moore we have another brilliant documentary that highlights more injusticies in the political world.
The film is focussed and to the point, with snippits of humour thrown in. Anyone failing to follow this movie is clearly not concentrating!
Of course all of the salient points are backed up by alot of evidence, which is especially disheartening to the Moore-haters.
I recommend everyone to watch this movie and do their own research of the evidence, it is time we all exercised our democratic rights!

For those wanting to research more into the failures of Capitalism, I suggest you look at David Harveys book "The Enigma of Capital".
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58 of 65 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A brief history of plutonomy and Government Goldman, 6 Mar 2010
This review is from: Capitalism - A Love Story [DVD] (DVD)
This is a timely film questioning the appropriateness of capitalism at a time when many will be undoubtedly feeling that it increasingly a system biased in favour of the greedy and reckless at the expense of the conscientious and cautious. The theme will resonate with many in light of banking bailouts. Moore quickly highlights the reason that Capitalism has proved so popular is the way in which the many believe that they might be one of the top brass themselves one day - so don't rock the boat that you might be climbing into... The connection with Brave New World is apparent.

Moore reminds us that however this is unlikely to be the case, because the game is rigged, people like Paulson and the other top bankers are pulling the strings of global government so they will always win the game at our expense. Until the point comes when there are are so many disenfranchised `peasants' that there is an uprising.

Capitalism: A Love Story starts well, drawing parallels with the fall of Rome, and echoes of Adam Curtis's short film for Punchdrunk's "It Felt Like A Kiss", using archive material of the American Dream. It reminds us out how we are increasingly expected to work harder and longer for the money to be concentrated in the hands of the few - i.e. working more for a lower quality of life, and the hand in glove relationship between the big banks, governments and how monetary policy and the focus on financial markets. All of which has generally been at the expense of the real economy.

Moore questions what has become of the `common good': altruism, humanity, open-source. People like Dr. Salk? Where are people's champions like them these days? He correctly identifies the fact that if you're smart and motivated, you go to Wall Street or the City where you use your gifts to develop ever more esoteric financial instruments to allow the world to engage in more and more complex financial betting.

Moore highlights how the short-termism of the markets frequently ends up costing those in the real economy, and increases the disparity between those at the top and bottom of the pile, and has contributed to the high levels of personal debt that the majority of the working classes now rely on to live their everyday lives. He reminds us of how we were persuaded to remortgage our homes to keep financing the consumer frenzy, which, now it has unwound, has driven the repossession boom in the US. The footage about the FOA's (Friends of Angelo of Countrywide) and the corruption at the very top regarding Countrywide is truly dismaying and alarming. As we all know, the people who are (still) running the show now are the very same people who caused the problem in the first place.

The documentary has a lot of POV footage of US homeowners getting repossessed after foreclosure, and having to burn their worldly possessions after cleaning the property out. The human face of the credit bubble, the face that the bankers would obviously not like to, and don't have to worry about.

Many have said - capitalism isn't great, but it's the best system we have. Moore isn't convinced, and nor am I, but Moore doesn't offer up any alternative other than democracy, which in itself I am not sure is sufficiently strong. Regrettably, as is the case with a lot of American film-directors of his ilk, he gets swayed by the religious / righteous issue and the Christian view of capitalism.

That said, Moore does keep himself in check with the loudaphone and publicity stunts, limiting himself to only a few stunts in Wall Street towards the end of the film. He correctly gives over the majority of the film to narrating the real story here - the human cost to the people at the bottom of the ladder who can least afford it, and should be commended for reminding us all of their plight at a time of further excess in the City. Above all, it is incredible that a film questioning Capitalism has proved so popular amongst audiences in Capitalism's birthplace - the US. Had this film come out 10 years ago, I expect it would have been broadly panned across all social strata. 4/5
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37 of 42 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I Spend And You Pay The Debt, 24 May 2010
By 
Ian Millard - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Capitalism - A Love Story [DVD] (DVD)
This is the first film I have seen by Michael Moore. I found it riveting from the start. It must be one of the hardest-hitting films I have ever seen. We are led through an analysis of how ever-looser regulation of banks, finance generally and companies generally led, via political corruption and negligence to a gigantic collapse in which the losers are home owners, employees and taxpayers, rather than the really or mostly guilty, meaning the politicians, highly paid suits etc. Though an American film about America, the same happened and is happening here in the UK.

Stalin is said to have said once that one human death is a tragedy, a million a statistic. That can be applied to people losing their homes of decades for such relatively piffling reasons as being unable to pay utility bills or local taxes. We read that X-thousand homes have been repossessed and it is a statistic. This film shows a few real people and for them it is, as it is for most people in such a position, tragic beyond expression. Despite the so-called "free society", these people have no recourse but to curse, look upset and to mutter about how they "should" rob a bank to get their own back...but of course will not, in almost all cases. It is a film which makes one angry at the System.

Moore notes another phenomenon common to USA and UK: the takeover of public institutions such as schools and prisons by private contractors. Dreadful and always likely to lead to dreadful results in the end. I have no idea whether Moore knows about the opposing idea postulated by Rudolf Steiner in the early 20th Century, that of the Threefold Social Order, mutually autonomous spheres (Economic, Political/Rights, culture), so that, for example, the takeover of a soccer club in the UK by BUSINESS interests is worng in principle, because a sport club should be run, as a cultural institution, for the fans, spectators, players, staff, not for outside shareholders. We can see in the UK that when business takes over (for example) football clubs, it leads to degeneration and chaos ultimately.

I was not really convinced by Moore's solution to the present finance-capitalist downturn etc, that of collective or co-operative takeover of all business, with all decisions within the business taken by popular vote, even by those who really know little of the issues in detail, being technical ones...

Socialism or Marxism-Leninism has proven itself to have been a failure as applied in the 20th Century, though I concede that, like capitalism, it was only a partial failure. A new way, probably based on the principles of the Threefold Social Order, is needed in the world, particularly in North America and above all, arguably, in Europe.

I havve no idea what are Moore's politico-economic views or "solutions" other than what I saw in this film. Based on the film, he seems to me to be closer to some form of anarchism or anarcho-syndicalism than anything, or to the form of anarchistic ideas found in Kropotkin's book Mutual Aid.

The stunts Moore carried out in the film made me laugh and were an amusing "propaganda of the deed".

An important aspect is that the political system in both UK and USA is not responsive at all to the real needs or wishes of the people. I cannot agree with Moore's naive idea that the election of Obama was almost a revolution, when it was, quite obviously, partially an expression of reformist ideals and partly a simple racially-based vote by American non-whites. Obama was elected by about 52% of the popular vote, McCain getting about 46%. No "landslide" contrary to what is often claimed. In any case, Obama has, as I predicted in a restricted-circulation study a couple of years ago, proven himself to be just another tool of the System, wittingly or otherwise.

Another important point made is that, in the 1950's (I think the date may not have been mentioned), the difference between bottom-rung employees' pay and that of the CEO was around 15x, whereas some CEO's now get hundreds or even thousands of times the pay of the people at the bottom. The same is true of the UK.

The result of the present finance-capital setup is that the corrupt top layer have created a mess and the people at the bottom are being told that "we" are "in debt" (to whom??) and have to "reduce deficits". Shades of the Protocols of Zion?

I was very struck by this film and hope that many people will see it and have compassion for those who suffer, then take action for a better society.
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24 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Right directionm and good entertainment, but has some real holes, 27 Mar 2010
By 
A. Mutimer "amutimer" (Essex, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Capitalism - A Love Story [DVD] (DVD)
One of the reviews below says that this film is timely. Well that's no acident, it's timely because Mr. Moore is striking while the iron is hot. The film is essentially a colourful and entertaining political tract suggesting viewers dissent against capitalism. And why not? America has always been that insane epicenter of excess and greed, bur previously in a way we could laugh at - not now, now its groteque excesses are not funny in the least. We have Paulson making a personal $20Bn by playing markets and so adding not one jot to the real economy, at the same time as this one in nine Americans is on food stamps - and they are on food stamps precisely because of the Wall Street that made Paulson his money! And if this were not bad enough these same ordinary folks watching the rich get richer have to put up their tax dollars to save the institutions that caused the mess in the first place! Yes, America has absolutely reached new heights of imbalance and inequality and this film gives you a glimpse of all that. We get footage of people being turned out of their homes, we get footage of documentary about the disintegration of Rome to which Moore compares America, we get Jimmy Carter almost preeching to he American people that their greed and materialism has become hideous, and we get an expose of the corruption of the politicians and regulators that was a contributor the prpoerty bubble and the mess America is in (and that has taken the rest of us with it). So what is going on in the USA now is horrible and, to me at least, disgusting. However, despite this ugly focus the film itself is entertaining and funny. For example, as Moore protests against the co-option of Christianity by the radical right in America he has an overdub of Jesus saying that he cannot heal someone because they have pre-existing condition. So it's well made and clever and it will surely stike a chord with many people - even the ones still asleep as they dream the American dream.

But is it cogent? I am not sure it is.

One of the other reviewers here suggests that Moore does an OK job of criticising but says very little about what could replace the Capitalism he hates. I would like to balance that by saying that Moore effectively suggests that a return to the 90% tax for superhigh earners would be desireable and he argues a lot in favour of workers democracy, and both of these would surely make *some* difference. But would it end capitalism? Of course not. Both Moore's suggestions rely on the *continuation* of Capitalism - and that is contraditory. More than once he has Catholic priests saying "Capitalism is evil" - and our Michael is himself a Catholic nd obviously thins the same thing. Well Michael mate, make up your mind! Do you want it or not?! I don't think he really knows. I think Moore thinks with his heart, and I love him for that - but for my money it just doesn't quite stand up.

Also I think the film fails in a way I have seen many times in leftist films like this; at one point he produces a story about a corrupt judge who sent kids into detention to line his own pocket. Well this is certainly a story of some very cruel and selfish people, but that story is really about *corruption* and does not really amount to a criticism of capitalism itself. Socialst stats have corruption of exactly this kind too...And you will see more this when you watch it - these are filmatic non-sequitors.

OK so it is entertaining, it makes a few (good?) suggestions, but I think it is ultimately self-contradictory.

Fine, fine, fine, is it any good? Yes reader, it is - five stars good - because despite its shortcomings the film is a genuinely entertaining invitation to everyone, especially those who are profoundly asleep dreaming the American dream, to wake up. That dream is now a nightmare of inequality and almost surreal imbalances and Americans just *have* to wake up. This film may help, and I hope so, because if they don't (and frankly, I don't think they will) then the nightmare will get a *lot* worse, not just for Americans but for all of us. Failing that American epiphany America's gun culture will erupt - and take everything with it. That will make our current economic hardship and the little wars we have going on in Iraq and Afghanistan look like like some of the best things that ever happened to us...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Much, much better than I'd expected, 16 July 2013
By 
Lark (North Coast of Ireland) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Capitalism - A Love Story [DVD] (DVD)
I was at a time a big, big fan of Moore's movies and publishing but havent seen Sicko [DVD] and stopped reading his books after Dude, Where's My Country?, I'd always had differences with Moore but I'd started to think that he was beginning to appear like the show boating or grandstanding individual his political opponents had made him out to be.

So I was prepared for a feature that would be more Moore than anything else, with a good measure of exaggeration and sensationalism but I have to say this was actually a very good feature.

Moore is able to present how the US was able to sell the world and its public a story of what capitalism was built on profits derived from a lack of international competition and short term profiteering from pretty brutal managerialism.

The business practices of Walmart, who derived massive revenue from life insurance claims upon dead employees, airlines which underpay pilots and the subprime mortgages are used to illustrate how characterising working people and communities as "peasants" has become the norm.

There is a lot of nasty class war going on without a socialist in sight, the icing on the cake are memos from within Citibank describing the US as a "Plutonomy" and hailing the decline and demise of democracy.

By the point at which Moore is compariing deregulated finance and gansterism it doesnt seem that vitriolic at all, when he goes to a financial district to ask them to explain their loans he is probably trolling/provoking but he doesnt cut their "advice" that he stop making movies.

Its a sorry story of business practices becoming less and less ethically sound, involving less production and more predation, describing the action of the rich in the run up to the global crisis as heists is not unreasonable.

Moore doesnt propagate what could be described as "anti-capitalism" either, not really, there is an ethical critique made by religious commentators and he presents businesses whose practices and structures by design would prevent scandalous boardroom pay and, for want of a better word, the "gangsterism".

I'd recommend this to as wide an audience as possible, I know that it will probably end up as fodder for Moore's usual viewers, he has a fandom of his own just as he has another "following" who villify him unfairly, but that would be a shame. This is a good documentary, without real prescriptions besides what has until relatively recently been commonplace, and what really is the unreported world.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Return to Form, 24 April 2010
This review is from: Capitalism - A Love Story [DVD] (DVD)
Michael Moore is back again. In many ways there is nothing really left to say about Mr. Moore. He has been the hero of liberal America but then he has also been characterised as a hypocrite. I personally find him an engaging host and as a result I will focus on the film rather than the the person.

"Capitalism: A Love Story" is basically Michael Moore returning to his roots. There is a noticeable decision to keep the hyperbole and rhetoric to a minimum and leave the story to tell itself. Yes there are moments of classic (slightly annoying) Moore where he doorsteps corporate HQs and passes police tape around parts of Wall Street but these, as we all know, are just part of his shtick and to be honest they do help to lighten the mood in what could otherwise be a rather depressing tale.

Whilst this is a look at the wider system of Capitalism in the USA it is in many ways a very personal film focused on the working people of Moore's country and takes him right back to his days of "Roger and Me" (he even has some footage from that film included). I believe that the "Love Story" is an ironic reference to his hatred of the system of economic exploitation that has caused so much damage to so many people throughout his country and the world. Once again his campaigning for a better life for his home town of Flint should be applauded.

Moore comes across as a person who genuinely cares for the people who he meets in the film and he has rightly focused on the need for collectivisation of workers to stand up against their bosses. I really feel that this is a return to form for Moore with some powerful imagery and angry challenges to the role of private finance in controlling our countries. Michael Moore does not come out of this film as a heroic crusader - which was clearly not his goal - but the people who do are the workers at the window plant in Chicago, the Miami street campaigners, and the Representative who told the people of America to stay in their homes after eviction by corrupt banks.

This film is a must watch for anyone interested in the current crisis of neo-liberal capitalism.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good message, but hard going, 6 Oct 2011
By 
SpookyPuppy (London, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Capitalism - A Love Story [DVD] (DVD)
I was looking forward to watching this documentary because it had been recommended to me by a trusted friend. I found it very hard going - even though I agreed with the message and with what was ostensibly an angle of "the ills of modern capitalism" (or should we say - an amalgamation of modern feudalism and extreme capitalism?). It was not so much the documentary's style or production that made difficult viewing, it was the upsetting nature of the real people examples and the heart-rending situations that they had been forced to live with. In this sense, there should almost be a warning on the DVD, especially if you don't want your blood pressure to slowly rise, or to become quietly angry and frustrated at what the world of greed has done to others. In fact there is a kind of 'spoof' warning at the start of the DVD, but I didn't take it seriously. Still worth watching though.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely brilliant, 21 May 2010
This review is from: Capitalism - A Love Story [DVD] (DVD)
It doesn't matter if you like or dislike Michael Moore as a person, a writer or a filmmaker, one thing is always consistent with Michael Moore's work and that is making a documentary which is not just informative but also very entertaining.

Corruption exists in every country, but it is more obvious in some than the others. It is not uncommon to read about head of a state in one of the third world countries buying or building a palace for tens of millions of dollars, whilst his people live in poverty and lack basic needs, such as clean water. But in the industrialist countries corruption is much more subtle. This movie not only looks at the reasoning behind the cause of credit crunch and financial meltdown but it also tries to bring into our attention behind the scene businesses that go on between corporations and politicians.

One would question why this hasn't been challenged before and corrected. The problem is it is so widespread that no one can dare challenge the machinations.

The film would have been even funnier if it weren't so tragic.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Patchy, but the Best in its Field, 12 Oct 2010
By 
Magic Lemur (Somewhere in Madagascar) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Capitalism - A Love Story [DVD] (DVD)
One problem with Capitalism is the misapprehensions people have about it.
Firstly, its not a 'system' (something Moore makes the mistake of calling it). All it is is letting people behave without restriction in an economy (just as Free speech is letting people speak without restriction.)
Second is that, like Churchill said about democracy, it is the "worst form of government except for all those others that have been tried from time to time."

And these are two issues that prevent me giving this film the full 5 stars. Yes - it is a compelling critique & makes a number of good points (e.g. about Pilots being paid less that $20,000 a year & Dead Peasants insurance), but Moore really fails in some of his thinking.

Several examples, the first being foreclosures. Though foreclosures have become far too commonplace in the US, Moore does not make this clear in his film, but instead goes on the offensive against the very idea that people can be turned out of their homes for not paying their bills. Yes - it is cruel to throw people out at short notice, but not throwing non-payers out *ever* is also bad. Surely there is a balance, but this is nowhere made clear.
Second, Moore makes out that socialism is an alternative system, rather than just being an adaptation of what is already there. Systems that go for pure socialism tend to have little ability to generate Wealth and so fail (even Fidel Castro has begun admitting this recently). Again, its a balancing act, and not one system vs another.
Third, Moore has big issues with lay-offs & even makes the false correlation that General Motor's lay-offs in the 80's lead to bankrupcy in the 2000's. Truth is that big companies have to lay-off people to stay competitive and, even if fat-cat bonuses could be trimmed, that wouldn't mean that you should good money after bad & keep loss-making plants open.

Anyways, aside from those issues, I really enjoyed this film & found it refreshing to see someone stand up for the principles of Roosevelt & Liberal democracy.
In an ideal World, all of Moore's ideas would be implementable & Heaven might dawn on Earth. As things are, there are only a few ideas of his that hit home, but these all have great potency.

For instance, Why does America not have more workers cooperatives? Why not tax the 1% richest more? And, most importantly, how dare the rich claim that their accumulation of wealth is in line with the teachings of Christ?

And since few others are offering alternative arguments like Moore's (with the exception of the slightly crazy Zeitgeist, the sadly overlooked The Corporation & the immortal Bill Hicks), then I do recommend all and sundry to watch this film.

The day that the World gains a new Karl Marx (with a moral compass & a dash of self-affacing humour) will surely be a good day for all...
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 3 July 2014
By 
Rafal Pielka - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Capitalism - A Love Story [DVD] (DVD)
Very Good Superb Item. I am happy. Thank you
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Capitalism - A Love Story [DVD]
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