Monday, 15 July 2013

The Corporation (2003) - ★★★★

Directors: Jennifer Abbott, Mark Achbar

The Corporation is a highly informative, mostly riveting documentary that (as expected) both enraged me and left me a little depressed. There is so much material in this film that I was constantly learning something new, which in the end is the ultimate objective of a documentary (that, and making a difference). It teaches us about the rise of 'The Corporations', as well as the atrocities that have been committed and the atrocities that are still being committed. There is a diverse range of people interviewed throughout the film, from extreme left-wing film-maker Michael Moore to the actual managers of mega-corporations such as Shell. The style of the film looks very amateur (probably from primitive computer software) and they stated the obvious too much for my liking. What makes this a great documentary is that it has a huge array of interesting information, stories, and facts that at times really shocked me.

The first hour or so told me nothing that I didn't already know. It was an introductory period for people who knew hardly anything about what a corporation is and what their ultimate objectives are. After this introductory period, things really picked up!

One thing that outraged me was finding out that companies can "discover" and patent living organisms through biotechnology in their research labs. The fact that they can OWN things that directly impact the evolution of life on Earth is appalling. This segment shocked me like you won't believe.

Another interesting and enraging corporate scandal occurred between the Monsanto Corp. and "The Investigators," a short-lived show on Fox News. The Investigators was going to be a show of integrity and hard-hitting stories. Their first scoop was that of the unsafe and blatant misrepresentation of the RBGH drug that was injected into cows. It was going to blow the whistle, reporting on how the drug has been linked to cancer and extreme suffering for cattle. After receiving threatening letters from Monsanto, Fox finally gave in. Monsanto payed 3 Billion dollars to Fox so that they'd either drop the story or make the changes they wanted. The reporters of the show refused to fabricate evidence on the grounds that it 'isn't news'. According to one of the reporters, a GM of the corp. told them "We'll tell you what the news is. The News is what we say it is." Trust me, you really don't want to miss this story. My writing does not do it justice.

There are some really cool clips from old commercial archives.
Another thing that I found extremely interesting was the segment on the collusion between Corporation's and the rise of fascist regimes to power. In particular, the IBM punch card machines and paper were used by Nazi's to keep records of their prisoner's in concentration camps. Despite the atrocities the Nazi's committed, profits took precedence over moral obligation.

These are just a few interesting stories that I loved. There is so much more to be seen and heard in The Corporation. I would call this a documentary that everyone should see, because it is extremely important that people see the impacts that corporations are having on people and the environment. It's almost always fascinating, making it one of the best documentaries I've seen in years.

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