Movie review of “The Best Democracy Money Can Buy: A Tale of Billionaires and Ballot Bandits”: The title tells all in Greg Palast’s fast-paced documentary about our continuing economic/political crisis, which he sees as the inevitable outcome of American racism.
“I give up!”
So says Greg Palast, co-director of the latest documentary about our continuing economic/political crisis, “The Best Democracy Money Can Buy: A Tale of Billionaires and Ballot Bandits.”
He doesn’t mean it, of course. If he really had given up on finding a solution, there would be no movie. And he wouldn’t be plugging away at his claim that American racism is largely the reason for widespread injustices.
Movie Review ★★★
‘The Best Democracy Money Can Buy: A Tale of Billionaires and Ballot Bandits,’ a documentary directed by Greg Palast and David Ambrose. 110 minutes. Not rated; for mature audiences. Ark Lodge Cinemas.
Palast will be present for Q&As at the 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. showings Saturday, Oct. 22.
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Specifically, he takes on the Supreme Court for gutting voting rights and the silent 1915 Ku Klux Klan film, “The Birth of a Nation,” for spreading distortions about Reconstruction. The Koch brothers are cited, and so is “The Vulture,” a billionaire and top GOP donor. There’s even a minor role for Donald Trump, who has a familiar sound bite: “This election is rigged.”
Also visible in cameo roles: Ed Asner, Rosario Dawson and Willie Nelson, whose sly manner turns the tables on his interviewer. The pace is swift, archival clips are well-chosen and conspiracy theories pile up in a way that seems intentionally funny.
The final impact, with its emphasis on Dr. Martin Luther King’s legacy and “We Shall Overcome,” is downright funereal.