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Review: Where to Invade Next

February 26, 2016

By John Corrado

★★★½ (out of 4)

Where to Invade Next PosterThe latest from prolific documentarian Michael Moore, Where to Invade Next is also one of his best films yet, having already found a place on my list of the finest documentaries of 2015, following its surprise festival premiere last year.

After being consulted by the American government on whether or not to send more troops overseas, the filmmaker is determined to go around the world and find different uses for tax dollars, instead of pouring more money into the military or oil industries.

This journey takes him to multiple different developed countries, mostly in the European Union, “invading” them as a one man army trying to find the best ideas to bring back to America.  This includes paid vacation time for workers in Italy, bountiful school lunches and sex-positive education in France, an amazing school system in Finland, and gender equality in Iceland.

Through interviews with different citizens and lawmakers from these countries, Michael Moore touches on a lot of social and political issues throughout this always engaging film, including prison reform, women’s rights, decriminalizing street drugs, and prosecuting bankers for fraud.  The filmmaker offers plenty of food for thought in his exploration of these progressive social changes, and the rewards that have been reaped in return.  The film not only showcases some of his finest comic antics, but also his most gutting dramatic moments, including a truly haunting use of “We Are the World.”

Although bound to be one of Michael Moore’s most divisive films, I took a lot away from it.  Entertaining, surprisingly moving, and ultimately profoundly optimistic for a brighter future, Where To Invade Next is Michael Moore at his best and most inspiring, offering a resonant reminder that the power to make a positive difference in the world lies within us all as individuals.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Marc Ross permalink
    March 4, 2016 3:35 pm

    Moore, the modern-day Mark Twain who over-preached to the choir of the progressive, or liberal minded in “Where to Invade Next.’

    Moore profiles a (humane) maximum-security prison in Norway. As part of the orientation for Norway’s convicted felons, a movie screening of prison officials singing a remastered version of the 1985 song, ‘We are the World’ is required viewing. (‘We Are the World’ was meant to raise money for humanitarian relief during the famine in Ethiopia).

    Could it be considered a part of “humane punishment” that prisoners have to listen to the stoic/serious looking, and sounding guards singing??



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