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The Corporation


Year: 2004 
Running Time:
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 (XWide) 
Certificate: BBFC PG Cert – Parental guidance 
Subtitles: The level of subtitling in this film is unknown to WSC 
Directed by Unknown 
Starring: Unknown  
An image from The Corporation

The film starts off by exposing the fact that the corporation is legally a person. If you take that at face value, and put psychologists on the scene, they will come to this conclusion the corporation is a psychopath; it is self-centred, selfish and purely motivated by greed. It does not care about the environment, the global income distribution problem  or you.

The documentary is a montage of people talking about The Corporation accompanied by relevant images, sometimes with a narrator (with a cold, metallic voice, almost computer-like) spitting out facts. What's brilliant is that the documentary is unbiased, and uses little economic jargon but what it reveals is profound. I watched the documentary with a friend, and at the end I realised that some of the talking heads I regarded as inconsiderate jerks, he thought of as sensible people - that's how unbiased it is.

The documentary explores many issues related to The Corporation; specifically, cows being fed chemicals to boost milk production; the corporation pulling all stops to ensure that these chemicals are perceived to be safe; Bolivian people being forced to buy water, even rainwater; entrepreneurial bigshots and politicians congratulating each other while rioters are being arrested outside; and the commodity trader who proudly reveals that the first thing he thought of when the Twin Towers fell was 'How much is gold going to be up tomorrow?'

The point is this: we need to take a step back and stop doing whatever we're doing (because chances are it is related to The Corporation, even the act of studying in Warwick) and look at The Big Picture. The Corporation is replacing the world's politicians and governments as the ruling power, right under our noses. They change laws, exploit, lie, cheat, steal and murder almost always indirectly. At the end of the documentary, I really felt like punching The Corporation. Problem is, this 'person' does not have a physical body. Believe me when I say that, unlike Fahrenheit 9/11, whatever your ideologies are initially, this documentary will change them, one way or another. You will come out of the cinema looking at the modern world in a different light.

Sebastian Ng

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Screenings of this film:

2004/2005 Spring Term (35mm)