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Worth A Look: 17.76%
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7 reviews, 65 user ratings

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Corporation, The (2004)
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by Elaine Perrone

"Insanely entertaining study of the corporate personality as a psychopath."
5 stars

SCREENED AT SEATTLE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL 2004: In the mid-1800s, the corporate form of business was granted legal status as a "person," giving it a wide scope of rights as an entity and exempting its shareholders from personal liability. Now, in their exhaustively researched, immensely entertaining documentary The Corporation, filmmakers Mark Achbar (Manufacturing Consent) and Jennifer Abbott use as a springboard a World Health Organization diagnostic test on chronic antisocial behaviors to put forth some compelling evidence profiling this "personality" as more than a bit of a psychopath.

Featuring archival advertising footage; commentary by anti-corporate celebrities Noam Chomsky, Michael Moore, and Naomi Klein; and interviews with a number of multi-national corporate CEOs, a corporate spy, a commodities broker, and a couple of "corporately sponsored" teens, The Corporation delivers a riveting, if frightening, picture of the hold corporations have taken on dictating the way we live our lives and the alarming extent to which we have relinquished personal control.

Depicted in eye-opening detail are the third-world sweatshops where workers are paid pennies a day for the designer garments and accessories they churn out in minutes, and a gruesome look at the midwest farms where cows are fed the Monsanto drug BST/Posilac, a growth hormone that increases milk production but also causes infection in the animals and contaminates the dairy products delivered to American consumers. (The drug has been banned in Europe and Canada.) In one particularly enlightening segment of the documentary, former Fox News investigative reporters Jane Akre and Steve Wilson relate the pressure that was brought to bear by their employer to falsify their story about the effects of BST. They refused, and were subsequently fired, resulting in a fascinating "whistle-blower" lawsuit with a perhaps not-surprisingly perverse outcome.

Also frightening, if not entirely surprising, is the revelation that advertisers are hiring as their marketing experts psychologists, who use their training to hone in on children's developmental abilities to get them to buy the sponsors' products by "nagging" their parents, who admit to not being able to protect their youngsters from the popular and corporate culture.

In today's world, when corporations have become more powerful than government, the good news is that individuals and groups are fighting back, and winning, in movements spanning the globe from the WTO protests in Seattle, to the battle against privatization of water in Bolivia, the overturn of a monopoly on basmati rice in India, and the revocation of a W.R. Grace and U.S. government patent on the organic pesticide Neem.

Under the law, we are told, the corporation has an obligation to put the financial interests of its owners above all other concerns. The knowledge that the corporation's sole priority is its bottom line truly gives individuals as consumers all the power we need to effect change by carefully choosing where we spend, what we boycott, and how we lobby -- and essentially vote -- with our hard-earned money.

link directly to this review at http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=8248&reviewer=376
originally posted: 07/16/04 23:24:51
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OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2004 Sundance Film Festival. For more in the 2004 Sundance Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2003 Vancouver Film Festival. For more in the 2003 Vancouver Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2004 Philadelphia Film Festival. For more in the 2004 Philadelphia Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2004 Sydney Film Festival. For more in the 2004 Sydney Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2004 Seattle Film Festival. For more in the 2004 Seattle Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2004 San Francisco Film Festival. For more in the 2004 San Francisco Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2004 Brisbane Film Festival. For more in the 2004 Brisbane Film Festival series, click here.
This film is listed in our political documentary series. For more in the Political Documentary series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2004 Minneapolis/St.Paul Film Festival. For more in the 2004 Minneapolis/St.Paul Film Festival series, click here.

User Comments

11/24/07 Ida Ansharyani It teach me how to see myself, and the reality of life in my country into a wider scheme 5 stars
7/31/07 fools♫gold So pretty it leaves me with these ineloquent sentences. Can't give it a high enough score. 5 stars
6/19/07 johnnyfog smartest guys in the room 4 stars
6/15/07 dnnxkz The professionals of Full Tilt Poker include the best and most famous poker players in the 1 stars
5/30/06 Kevin Very informative. Definitely intended for the "average" audience, though 5 stars
5/23/06 sean g GREAT! SHOULD BE required viewing for business ethics 101 courses 5 stars
5/07/06 Simon Very engaging, worthy of praise, but please do not enslave yourself to its activism... 5 stars
2/15/06 carole fuenzalida a real eye opener!! some of it i was already aware of..great movie 5 stars
1/04/06 Andrew Coomber Absolutely Thriving. The horror of globalization lies in here. 5 stars
10/26/05 Scott Extreme Left bashing of the freedom we fight for. 1 stars
6/04/05 Mike Jozic A little 'simple' in its execution but an otherwise well done doc. 3 stars
4/23/05 shirley kelley a life changing experience! 5 stars
11/06/04 Katie Heath Quite a few people got up and left when I was there but I was rivetted! 5 stars
10/27/04 David Delucchi extraordinary film 5 stars
9/27/04 Elendil ..but simplistic. Read Powers' Gain by if u want entertainment + history of corporations. 4 stars
9/27/04 Helen Bradley Brilliant. Fast paced documentary well researched 5 stars
9/19/04 David Löfgren I've been dreaming for so long... It's time to wake up! 5 stars
9/13/04 Johnna Laurel great concept,and also casting 5 stars
9/09/04 joe smith true,accurate countervailing statement 5 stars
9/06/04 Gene Beed Shallow, sophomoric, manipulative. Should appeal to most neoilbs. 1 stars
9/04/04 BC I feel I need to look more closely at my life and institute changes wherever possible 5 stars
9/02/04 sunny Great film, makes you think and want to make things better 5 stars
8/28/04 capitalbliss Great movie but now that we know, what next? I think we need a sequel Micheal. 5 stars
8/20/04 Mark Ridiculous anti-capitalist tirade obviously popular with brainwashed lefties 2 stars
7/31/04 Nikolai Corporations will buy the Vatican and gain a soul. War creates jobs and democracy. 5 stars
7/18/04 Cassandra Farrar makes you think! 4 stars
7/17/04 Michael Kwiatkowski I have not yet seen this film, but I want to. In fact, I most likely will. 4 stars
6/15/04 Thomas Hickey Great! A must see film for everyone! 5 stars
6/07/04 Anthony Pereira One of the most important movies I have seen in 37 yeares on our planet, or is it theirs. 5 stars
5/21/04 Rich Pretty damn important. 5 stars
5/15/04 Jean lacks objectivity and focus, still very interresting and enjoyable 4 stars
5/04/04 thejames go see it fucker! 5 stars
5/03/04 beatrice quite freaky....facing reality ...really good documentary..those docs are needed 5 stars
4/22/04 Ed Maher Required viewing for all Americans. 5 stars
4/13/04 Cameron Slick Totally awesome! 5 stars
4/12/04 Rob Bond Very thorough and informative! A film's GOT to be interesting to 4me2 want more after 3hrs! 5 stars
4/10/04 Tim Powerful, Incisive, Important documentary, Works VERY well as a commercial-release movie! 5 stars
4/07/04 filmguy fantastic! clear-headed, well-researched and tremendously engaging. Not to be missed. 5 stars
4/06/04 Jessie I had to watch The Corporation as a class assignment. It was a great film, makes you think 5 stars
4/04/04 The Kind Anarchy Organization founder people in the theatre were laughing...i was crying 5 stars
4/03/04 G Spafford Best movie I've seen in a long time. 5 stars
4/02/04 Hilarium It'll be in the US in June. Can't wait to see it again. 5 stars
4/02/04 Ken Shepard Take your family and friends 5 stars
2/25/04 Nicholas Engelking Looks good, hot topic, good facts, bad process, see it anyway. 3 stars
2/24/04 KC Grant Will it play in the US 5 stars
2/16/04 rgpratt Must-see 5 stars
2/14/04 ben backward logic, retarded 1 stars
2/07/04 Ten EVERYONE needs to see this movie 5 stars
2/06/04 Jason Andrew A must see! 5 stars
2/03/04 Larry McDonald Very interesting! 4 stars
2/02/04 Rosie R Riveting, shocking, HUGE wake-up call 5 stars
2/02/04 Isabelle This movie should be seen by all high school students & parents all over the world. 5 stars
1/29/04 Graham Doll enlightening 5 stars
1/28/04 sophie Brilliant!!!!!! 5 stars
1/28/04 theo the usual cast of (left) wing nuts 1 stars
1/24/04 sunil kumar see review 5 stars
1/24/04 mel amazing and eye opening. 5 stars
1/23/04 Immaculate If you have a place on this planet right now wake up and do some change 5 stars
1/22/04 Zamir A clairvoyant look at our corporate society 5 stars
1/21/04 Rosco Act on this!!! 5 stars
1/20/04 Tim Unbelievable - changed my life! 5 stars
1/19/04 L. Lapage Eye-Opener 4 stars
1/17/04 Nick I can't help but look at everything in a diffrent way 5 stars
12/02/03 Rita FANTASTIC 5 stars
10/19/03 Josiane Absolutly fantastic MUST see 5 stars
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  04-Jun-2004 (NR)
  DVD: 05-Apr-2005


  02-Sep-2004 (PG)

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