Where to Invade Next

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By Jim Carey

Where to Invade Next, Michael Moore’s latest movie is not to be missed. According to Variety’s Justin Chang: “An impishly entertaining, career summarizing polemic bent on demonstrating how other countries around the world—with their happy workers, superior schools, humane prisons, healthy sexual attitudes, and fully empowered women—are putting US progress to shame. This may be drive by tourism on a highly selective, flattering, and downright gluttonous scale, but there’s something undeniably sharp and buoyant about Moore’s globe­trotting, grass­is­greener approach that compels indulgence and attention.”

Occupy SMA meeting
Michael Moore’s film: Where to Invade Next
Mon, Apr 18, 1pm
Quinta Loreto Hotel
Loreto 15
No charge

Moore’s targets range from Italy, where he explores the prospects of extensive paid vacation, to Slovenia, a country that has solved the problem of student debt by making its colleges free. He touches on the progressive education system in Finland, where students seem to enjoy classwork in lieu of homework and standardized tests, and shows how French children learn about the benefits of eating well. In Norway he unearths shockingly humane prison systems that allow inmates their voting rights and touches on Germany’s ability to teach its younger generations about the country’s dictatorial past. Each time out, Moore concludes with a contrast to America’s shortcomings, less to wag a finger than to propose another remedy. For instance, after showing how Germany maintains landmarks of anti­Semitic regulations to remind its citizens of their country’s past, he envisions US streets doing the same thing to acknowledge its history of slavery. In Portugal he finds that the decriminalization of drug use has led to plummeting figures of drug use. Then he briefly surveys the decades of America’s war on drugs that effectively led to an outsized persecution of African Americans.

Peter Travers of Rolling Stone sums it up: “Love him or hate his methods, Moore touches a nerve in Where to Invade Next. In a climactic remembrance at the Berlin Wall, he recalls a time when a corrupt regime was brought down by people willing to protest. What counted most were humanitarian principles, the same bedrock concepts that America was founded on. See, the joke’s on us. The rest of the world is swiping ideas that we originated. Amid the comic chaos of this scattershot satire is a shocking reminder to Americans that discovering the path ahead may be as uncomplicated as rediscovering the way we were. It’s classic Moore.” Sadly, we are not #1. Our events are free and open to all. Join our discussion after the film.

 

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