FILM REVIEW | Inside Job

Inside Job (2010)
Narration by Matt Damon
Directed by Charles Ferguson; Written by Charles Ferguson, Chad Beck, and Adam Bolt
Review by Mark David Major

(Film blurb begins) From Academy Award-nominated filmmaker, Charles Ferguson, comes Inside Job, the first film to expose the shocking truth behind the economic crisis of 2008 (Reviewer’s note: not really). The global financial meltdown, at a cost of over $20 trillion, resulted in millions of people losing their homes and jobs. Through extensive research and interviews with major financial insiders, politicians and journalists, Inside Job traces the rise of a rogue industry and unveils the corrosive relationships which have corrupted politics, regulation and academia. (Film blurb ends)

Yes, Inside Job (2010) examines the 2008 Financial Crisis through the rose-tinted glasses of the far political left in America (center-left in Europe). In part, there is little doubt the film provides a contextual basis for the rise of Bernie Sanders and the Occupy Wall Street movement. However, this also means there are important parts of the economic, political, and regulatory story that are glossed over, missing, or (perhaps purposefully) ignored. For example, Inside Job begins its story – as you might expect – with the Reagan Administration (the left cannot ever stop itself from blaming Ronald Reagan for most anything) though the story actually goes much further back to the late 1960s/early 1970s during the Johnson and Nixon Administrations. But that would implicate a time of overwhelming Democratic legislative power at the Federal level, so the phrase ‘mortgage bond’ is not mentioned once in this film nor is the transition of FreddieMac and FannieMae into publicly-traded entities discussed. To be fair, this film was released in 2010 and probably filmed mostly in 2009. Some of these other crucial aspects about the 2008 Financial Crisis might not have yet come fully into the light. Having made this disclaimer, Inside Job is well worth the time to watch (with a little grain of salt, e.g. critical thought) as it does fill in some interesting gaps in the story. For example, I was absolutely shocked that American academics in the field of economics do not cite funding sources or potential financial conflicts of interest at the end of published reports and articles. I could not find anything but I would not be surprised to discover that George Soros partially funded this film. This Academy Award-winning Best Documentary is definitely worth the watch but all audiences should approach with extreme care. Mark’s Grade: B+


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