An adaptation of Margaret Atwood's book examining the metaphor of indebtedness.
I watched this film out of sequence for Jennifer Baichwal's catalogue, but it played much like Manufactured Landscapes. The film is structured on Margaret Atwood's book of the same title, Payback. I was going to read the book in tandem to the film, but after watching this film, I figured the same elements played out over Atwood's text. Payback explores debt as a concept and articulates it's evolution as a mode, and expression of power. The film branches onto the different kinds of debt, be it blood, or monetary -- and gets at describing it's different facets. Interspersed with real world situations are various contemporary thinkers (mostly Canadian), that situate debt's dynamics. While it opened at Sundance, I don't think…
Longer than it needs to be, because of needlessly plodding shots of jail cells and landscapes. It's helpful to have arguments situated in their social and environmental context, but unnecessary to do so again and again. Makes some interesting points, although many are made relatively gently. Still capable of kindling a righteous anger in the viewer, though.
Very interesting doc that presents itself as a visual essay to Margaret Atwood's non-fiction book that looked at the human concept of debt in a theological, economic, and ecological context. Has convinced me I want to read her book...
All of the films released in Toronto this year, by my records.
Some of these films didn't get a full…