8 September 2004 | DaADA1
An overshadowed yet incredible work
I literally accidentally saw this film in a cinema on the Champs-ElysÃ©es in Paris one evening in mid-July planning on seeing Shrek 2. I asked the usher what his favourite film was, and he told me "Le Monde Selon Bush", making sure to point out that it was not the film by Michael Moore. Having seen "Fahrenheit 9/11" recently, I decided to see France's take on the Bush administration. I had no idea what I had gone into.
This film is a triumph in terms of documentaries. It's narrated in French, but nearly the entire film is a series of interviews and archive footage, all in English, with French subtitles. The interviews are just amazing. They construct the entire Bush administration from the inauguration in January 2001 up until present day. Several key figures (including Iraqi weapons inspector Hans Blix and notorious Bush aide Paul Wolfowitz) as well as many White House insiders construct a portrait of the interior and goings-on within the Bush administration, frequently focusing on the religious aspects. The facts are so overwhelming and shocking that I literally felt short of breath in several instances. The footage is not doctored, the interviews very articulate and straight-forward, and the effect is absolutely stunning to say the least. Everything speaks for itself. From time to time, the narrator connects the testimonials into a network of characterisations that, with seemingly stunning accuracy, paint the zeal and fervour of the Bush administration, even hinting at the usage/ believing of the medieval divine right. The images of Bush being blessed on his way from Crawford to the White House, an Army General fervently preaching at a Baptist church, and the testimony of a White House staffer being told by Donald Rumsfeld on a Sunday morning that he "missed Bible study" are just some of the amazing and moving images in this film.
Weeks later, after having travelled to Nice and upon my return to Paris, I found the DVD recently released. Seeing as that I was moving to the States (in region 1) and that the DVD was encoded zone 2, I decided not to buy it. However, if you live in Europe, I implore you to find this film. See it by any means necessary. You won't regret it. What I wouldn't give to see the reception of it here.
And for the record, it ran laps around "Fahrenheit 9/11".