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MERCHANTS OF DOUBT (review)

merchants_of_doubtMERCHANTS OF DOUBT

Directed by Robert Kenner

From director Robert Kenner, who brought us the insightful look into American agriculture and food industry via FOOD, INC., comes a new film that exposes the lies told through the media and so-called “experts” that are manufactured to incite doubt on topics like tobacco use, acid rain and climate change. MERCHANTS OF DOUBT has a heavy and important message to convey, and it might just be what we need in today’s day and age, when we are constantly bombarded with facts and figures from apparently trusted sources.

Opening with an interview with a magician, or an illusionist, the film uses that premise throughout to communicate the idea that what we are being told might not be what is the truth. While this image gets beaten into our heads over and over, it is the one thing about MERCHANTS OF DOUBT that gets tedious. We get it; we are being tricked. That is what the exhaustive research of Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway’s book is about; we don’t need to be told over and over again. Perhaps since there is no narration in the movie, Kenner felt the need to add in shots of slight of hand tricks to make sure the audience knows whats up and is still paying attention.

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Despite the obvious redundancies throughout, the message of the film is important for everyone to see, as we see that the media and giant corporations are using pseudo-science and “experts” ( who aren’t actually scientists at all) to debunk issues on cancer from tobacco use and flame retardants in out furniture. Much of the information is shocking when it is revealed, and will have you second guessing the credentials next time you are watching an expert on TV who is trying to tell you that global warming isn’t actually an issue. At just over an hour and a half, MERCHANTS OF DOUBT runs into a few repetitive issues, but nothing that can’t be overlooked. Seeing this film will change the way you think about the information we are being force fed and we should know what we’re eating up.

4 sheep

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One Comment

  1. I was in tears of relief when I saw this film, because I think it might be what’s needed to turn the tide on this issue. So many people think this question is still undecided because the press gives equal weight to the non-experts. It’s their standard formula of finding someone from both sides to give an opinion, but when one side is explaining the consensus of all the scientists, and the other is defending Exxon’s lie, it’s keeping us from solving anything! I hope seeing the motive behind the climate change deniers will wake us up, before it’s too late.

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