F.I.L.M. of the Week (August 5, 2011)

5 08 2011

I decided to hold using Charles Ferguson’s “No End in Sight” for my pick as “F.I.L.M. of the Week” (contrived acronym meaning First-Class, Independent Little-Known Movie) as I didn’t think it would be proper to publicize a movie critical of the government when Washington was in the midst of a debt ceiling deadlock.  But now that the debacle has put postponed the doomsday clock until 2013, I figure now it’s no longer kicking a man while he’s down.

Much like he did in his Academy Award-winning documentary “Inside Job,” Ferguson sees a blunder and ruthlessly investigates and holds everyone responsible.  While he has a pointed emphasis on the cabinet of George W. Bush, no one goes unexamined in this tale an operation gone tragically wrong in the face of simple, avoidable mistakes that were the result of clarity-blinding egos.  Ferguson is simply the best documentarian out there at taking complex things like the War in Iraq and breaking them down into simple, understandable components without dumbing down the entire movie.

He shows how the Persian Gulf War fought under the first President Bush led to mistaken assumptions that the Shi’ites would welcome a United States invasion, just as Donald Rumsfeld mistakenly believed that we could invade them with half the troops.  By giving us this tragic set-up, Ferguson makes the botched administration of the occupation magnify in disastrous impact.  While some might argue that Ferguson only presents one side of the story, his interviewees are highly competent and he, along with narrator Campbell Scott, matches their level-headed retrospect.  It’s less a call for heads as it is a call for reason and logic.  If Libya were to go south, I guarantee Ferguson would make “No End in Sight 2” and point the same finger at President Obama.

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2 responses

11 08 2011
Whiffer

Just saw this…whoa. The documentary as persuasive essay.

12 08 2011
Marshall

Ha, yes, that seems to get it in essence.

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