Independent Lens: Season 8, Episode 22

Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room (13 Oct. 2005)

TV Episode  -   -  Documentary
7.9
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 4,493 users   Metascore: 82/100
Reviews: 74 user | 234 critic | 37 from Metacritic.com

Corporate audio and videotapes tell the inside story of the scandal involving one company's manipulation of California's energy supply and its, and how its executives wrung a billion dollars out of the resulting crisis.

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Cast

Episode credited cast:
...
Narrator
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
John Beard ...
Himself
...
Herself (archive footage)
...
Himself
Jim Chanos ...
Himself
Dick Cheney ...
Himself
...
Himself (archive footage)
Carol Coale ...
Herself
...
Himself
Reggie Dees II ...
Young man the stripper dances in front of (as Reggie Deets II)
Joseph Dunn ...
Himself
Max Eberts ...
Himself
Peter Elkind ...
Himself
Andrew Fastow ...
Himself
David Freeman ...
Himself
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Storyline

Based on the best-selling book of the same name by Fortune reporters Bethany McLean and Peter Elkind, a multidimensional study of one of the biggest business scandals in American history. The chronicle takes a look at one of the greatest corporate disasters in history, in which top executives from the 7th largest company in this country walked away with over one billion dollars, leaving investors and employees with nothing. The film features insider accounts and rare corporate audio and video tapes that reveal colossal personal excesses of the Enron hierarchy and the utter moral vacuum that posed as corporate philosophy. The human drama that unfolds within Enron's walls resembles a Greek tragedy and produces a domino effect that could shape the face of our economy and ethical code for years to come. Written by Sujit R. Varma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

It's Just Business

Genres:

Documentary

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and some nudity | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Language:

Release Date:

13 October 2005 (Australia)  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$76,639 (USA) (22 April 2005)

Gross:

$4,064,421 (USA) (16 September 2005)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Among the protesters who disrupt the meeting with Jeff Skilling at San Francisco's Commonwealth Club is Marla Ruzicka, who was killed on 16 April 2005 in Iraq by a suicide bomber. She founded CIVIC (Campaign for Innocent Victims of Conflict) which worked to help the victims of the war in Iraq and she was a former Global Exchange activist. See more »

Quotes

Gray Davis: [upon being asked whether the rumors that he was responsible for the black outs in California are just a plot by the Republican party to get him recalled]
[shouts]
Gray Davis: Hello!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Special thanks includes "all the `Deep Throats' - you know who you are!" See more »

Connections

References Body Heat (1981) See more »

Soundtracks

California Sun
Written by Henry Glover and Morris Levy
Used by permission of EMI Virgin Songs, Inc.
d/b/a EMI Longitude Music
Performed by Los Straitjackets
Courtesy of Calvalcade/Yep Rock Records
By Arrangement with Ocean Park Music Group
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User Reviews

 
This movie is a must-see
27 April 2005 | by (Raleigh, NC) – See all my reviews

The documentary "The Smartest Guys in the Room" is based on the excellent book by Bethany McClean and Peter Elkind. If you work for an American corporation, have ever owned stock in a corporation, or have mutual funds, you must see this movie. It gives a clear eyed view of what can happen in our society when greed really is considered good. The movie accomplishes what few in this genre have done: It is informative and also entertaining. Some of this is due to the behavior of Enron executives. For example, one frequented strip clubs every night and made his staff come along. Naturally that requires video of strippers. Some of the most damning video is from Enron execs themselves. They never dreamt they would be caught. Hubris gone wild. Go see this movie. Take friends with you. You will be glad you did. First rate film all around.


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