The End Of Poverty (2008)
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Critic Reviews for The End Of Poverty
Even if you're convinced by the many well-spoken interviewees, the film's conclusion is almost as depressing as the historical indictment that precedes it.
Because Diaz constructs his movie like a classroom tutorial, we expect something more from him than an appeal to end privatization.
Why Philippe Diaz has titled his new documentary The End of Poverty? is unclear, because this guilt trip/history lesson is really about the beginning of poverty.
The End Of Poverty? offers simplistic answers to many of the most pressing questions of our time.
Audience Reviews for The End Of Poverty
"The End of Poverty?" is a documentary that starts well enough in telling the history of colonial exploitation which began in 1492 and simply went downhill from there for the indigenous peoples in Africa, Asia and South America. Surprisingly, things did not get that much better with independence as an insidious form of imperialism took over, more economic than political. The IMF and World Bank(or legal loan sharks, if you will) gave out loans to developing countries while dictating the terms which usually meant the gutting of social programs and protections for their citizens, leaving the population without a safety net or jobs in many cases. Whereas the interviews with ordinary citizens are heartbreaking, they also tend to be repetitious, as the documentary should have spent more time with them and skipped the statistics. These vignettes also give the feeling that the suffering is passive with a few exceptions like the water protests in Bolivia. Not quite, as it turns out.
In reality, a movement has been working on two fronts to challenge the IMF/World bank hegemony that Rebecca Solnit recapped in a recent article. Activists starting in Seattle in 1999 have been bringing huge protests to the bankers' front door, demanding debt forgiveness(Which is mentioned once in the film. It might have a chance if we slashed the military budget), while leaders are elected in South America that are responsive to their citizens' needs, especially in Venezuela and Bolivia.(The documentary talks to most of Evo Morales' government but does not mention his historic win.) And it would have been interesting to compare Cuba to the other countries mentioned in this film which I think has it sort of right. This is not an end, just a new beginning.
Preachy but on-target indictment of post-colonialist globalized capitalism. Makes the case that poverty and economic disparity are caused by a continuous series of thefts, brutalizations, and dehumanizations of "developing" nations by "developed" ones. While it is not an exhaustive treatment of the subject, it does connect the dots between the different eras of violent exploitation, showing that downright murderous policies and economic models are to blame. What in colonial times was simply accomplished with the stroke of a pen and the deployment of conquistadors is now accomplished with privatization, political corruption, subversive economics, and, as a last resort, plain old murder. This documentary gives us this overview, but whets the appetite for a good deal more information, and leaves us without any specific solutions to apply.
good topic and well presented. throws out some sobering facts about poverty and the status of the world. this is an important film to see.
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