Category Archives: Consumerism

Dreamwork China (2013)

written/directed by Tommaso Facchin and Ivan Franceschini

The dreams and rights of a new generation in the world’s factory. In the suburbs of Shenzhen, in Guangdong province, young workers talk about their lives, existences built on a precarious balance between hope, struggles and wishes for the future. Around them activists and ZNGOs strive to give sense and meaning to works like rights, dignity and equity.


Compliance (2012)

90m; U.S.

Director: Craig Zobel

Cast: Ann Dowd, Dreama Walker and Pat Healy

Synopsis: “In the middle of a bad day Sandra (Ann Dowd), the harried manager of a fast-food franchise, receives a phone call from a man claiming to be a police officer. He accuses an employee named Becky (Dreama Walker) of theft and instructs Sandra to subject the pretty teenager to a series of humiliations: detain her in the stock room, confiscate her belongings, conduct a strip search and on and on. As the title suggests, at each step of this increasingly elaborate and unnerving hoax, Sandra and Becky do what they are told.”

‘Compliance’ Raises Questions About Human Behavior; NYT 8/10/2012



They Live (1988)

93m; U.S.

Director: John Carpenter

Cast: Roddy PiperKeith David and Meg Foster

Synopsis (IMDB): Nada, a down-on-his-luck construction worker, discovers a pair of special sunglasses. Wearing them, he is able to see the world as it really is: people being bombarded by media and government with messages like “Stay Asleep”, “No Imagination”, “Submit to Authority”. Even scarier is that he is able to see that some usually normal-looking people are in fact ugly aliens in charge of the massive campaign to keep humans subdued.


Two or Three Things I Know About Her (2 ou 3 choses que je sais d’elle) [1967]

90m; France

Director: Jean-Luc Godard

Cast: Joseph Gehrard, Marina Vlady and Anny Duperey

Synopsis: Prostitution becomes a metaphor for marriage and for working class; selling one’s body for food, shelter and consumer goods.


Umbrella (2007)

Director: Du Haibin

The program of economic reforms initiated in China in 1978 by Deng Xiaoping aimed to finance the modernization of the nation. But what Communist Party leaders called “Socialism with Chinese characteristics” looked suspiciously to many as a return to capitalism. Today, some three decades later, the results of those sweeping economic reforms have become plainly visible in a country increasingly divided between its rural and urban sectors.

Filmed in five different regions of China, UMBRELLA provides a telling look at the vast changes that have taken place in Chinese society, including a massive migration from the countryside to the cities, the rise of a prosperous new class of businesspeople, millions of new college graduates competing for a shrinking number of jobs, and the neglect of China’s largest population group, its rural peasants.


The Story of Stuff (2000)

20m; U.S

Director: Louis Fox

Synopsis (IMDB): For most of the world, consumption has been the unquestioned duty of every individual. Then garbage activist Annie Leonard brought her two-hour lecture to Free Range who helped her turn it into a 20-minute animated revolution. Shown in thousands of classrooms, endlessly blasted by Fox News, viewed more than 10 million times, The Store of Stuff finally opens the door to a serious cultural dialog about the costs of consumption.

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Posted by on June 13, 2012 in Animation, Consumerism


Monsieur Verdoux (1947)

124m; U.S.

Director: Charlie Chapin

Cast: Charles Chaplin, Mady Correll and Allison Roddan

Synopsis: Leaving the Little Tramp behind, Charles Chaplin plays a soft-spoken French gentleman who supports his children and crippled wife by marrying rich widows and killing them. Chaplin’s theme — that if war is the logical extension of diplomacy, then murder is the logical extension of business — is delivered in a series of darkly hilarious and elegantly staged comic sequences, culminating in another of the director’s poignant conclusions. Almost unanimously vilified upon its original release, it today takes its rightful place among Chaplin’s masterpieces.

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Posted by on April 20, 2012 in Comedy, Consumerism