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An epic in length and breadth, this documentary aims at nothing less than a full-scale portrait of the most dominant institution on the planet Earth in our lifetime--a phenomenon all the more remarkable, if not downright frightening, when you consider that the corporation as we know it has been around for only about 150 years. It used to be that corporations were, by definition, short-lived and finite in agenda. If a town needed a bridge built, a corporation was set up to finance and complete the project; when the bridge was an accomplished fact, the corporation ceased to be. Then came the 19th-century robber barons, and the courts were prevailed upon to define corporations not as get-the-job-done mechanisms but as persons under the 14th Amendment with full civil rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness (i.e., power and profit)--ad infinitum.
The Corporation defines this endlessly mutating life-form in exhaustive detail, measuring the many ways it has not only come to dominate but to deform our reality. The movie performs a running psychoanalysis of this entity with the characteristics of a prototypical psychopath: a callous unconcern for the feelings and safety of others, an incapacity to experience guilt, an ingrained habit of lying for profit, etc. We are swept away on a demented odyssey through an altered cosmos, in which artificial chemicals are created for profit and incidentally contribute to a cancer epidemic; in which the folks who brought us Agent Orange devise a milk-increasing drug for a world in which there is already a glut of milk; in which an American computer company leased its systems to the Nazis--and serviced them on a monthly basis--so that the Holocaust could go forward as an orderly process.
The movie goes on too long, circles too many points obsessively and redundantly, and risks preaching-to-the-choir reductiveness by calling on the usual talking-head suspects--Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn, Michael Moore. And except for an endlessly receding tracking shot in an infinite patents archive, there's scarcely an image worth recalling. Still, it maps the new reality. This is our world--welcome to it. --Richard T. Jameson --This text refers to an alternate DVD edition.
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* * Two feature audio commentaries: One with co-directors Mark Achbar and Jennifer Abbott, and one with writer Joel Bakan
* * Janeane Garofolo interviews Joel Bakan on Air America's Majority Report
* * "Q's and A's": A selection of television, radio and festival interview segments with the filmmakers, including segments from CNN Financial, WNYC, WBAI, and Air America
* * Theatrical trailers for The Corporation and Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky and the Media
* * Selection of deleted scenes, including additional clips from Michael Moore's The Awful Truth
* * Grassroots marketing video segment
* * "Topical Paradise" and "Tell Me More": Over 5.5 hours of additional footage of The Corporation's 40 interviewees (and then some), searchable by topic or interview subject
* * Plus: Additional trailers, a very cool short film ("What Barry Says"), web links, subject updates, and more! Yes, even more. Like an incredible keynote presentation that Thomas Alan Linzey gave at the Bioneers conference last year (it's the last item in the list of "Strategies For Change".)
I sat down one day and figured out that if you were to watch the film and all the extras, and listened to all the audio commentaries, it would total a 16 hour media experience... I'm not suggesting anyone actually put themselves through that, but the way it's laid out, whatever your area of interest, there's something there for you that will enhance your experience of the film. So enjoy!Read more ›
This is one DVD which MUST be shown to every secondary school student before they are allowed to graduate. Not only is it educational and topical, but also highly entertaining! I wish I could give it MORE than 5 stars!
Look at all the people they have in the film: http://thecorporation.com/index.php?page_id=3
This film deserves far more attention than it gets right now. And the best thing is that it is funded by Canadian govermental funding institutions and not corporations like Viacom, AOL or Disney. Yes, it did get money from Rogers TeleFund, but if you listen to the makers you find out Rogers had no say in the film. Rogers donated the money to the fund and the independent canadian film makers/some sort of guild decided which project to put the money into.
If you're wondering how that's even possible, let's begin at the beginning...
The first thing you need to know is that although "The Corporation" is a documentary of sorts, it is a long, long way from the standard fare you'll find on the History or Discovery Channels. What we get here is an original thesis put forward by people who have thought very carefully about the corporation as a social institution, and who have something that they want to say about it. This documentary sets forth their views in exactly the same way that we were all taught to write our essays: that is, as a logical argument in support of a particular position.
The position taken is that if we look carefully at how the corporation works, it becomes apparent that this institution is set up to operate in a way that would be considered psychopathic were the same behavior to be observed in a real, flesh and blood human being.
Incidentally, since sharing an earlier version of this review with a friend, I have been reminded that most people do not fully understand what the term "psychopath" actually means in a clinical sense. Very, very few psychopaths are the slavering killers of fiction. Psychopaths are quite simply people without the capacity to truly care about other people. They also often have problems with impulse control. As a result, they tend to wreck considerable damage on those around them. However, they are not necessarily - or even usually - criminals, and can lead superficially normal, even highly successful lives.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
This should be mandatory watching for everyone. Amazing documentary.Published 6 months ago by Nathan Beers
While the documentary is well produced, I do not think it presented anything new that anyone who understands everyday economics and business did not already know. Read morePublished 13 months ago by O Canada
One of the best and most timely documentaries there is. If you haven't seen it watch it!Published 18 months ago by MEK
A truthful look at how corporations have twisted things to suit their own bottom lines...and much more... well put together and very informative.Published on April 29 2014 by GMAN
One of the best DVD's on the topic of corporate greed that has been released. Well written, well narrated and with credible accounts from experts in recognizable, respected and... Read morePublished on Jan. 4 2014 by Avid Fan
Wow. This film is a must see. Not demonising anyone or anything, but a very honest assessment of how it is that large (and especially multi-national) corporations are consistently... Read morePublished on July 28 2010 by Derek Satnik
Fantastic, entertaining, enlightening, educational film. I agree - not only every single secondary school student should watch it AND have discussions/debates afterwards in their... Read morePublished on Sept. 27 2009 by Concerned World Citizen