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Freakonomics (2010) More at IMDbPro »

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Freakonomics -- The best-selling book that dramatically changed the way we look at the world is brought to life by six of the most acclaimed directors of our time in a funny, thought-provoking and highly entertaining film.
Freakonomics -- Some of the world's most innovative documentary filmmakers explore incentives-based thinking.


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Popularity: ?
Down 7% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Writers (WGA):
Peter Bull (written by) (segment) &
Alex Gibney (written by) (segment) ...
View company contact information for Freakonomics on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
3 December 2010 (UK) See more »
Six Rogue Filmmakers Explore The Hidden Side Of Everything
A collection of documentaries that explores the hidden side of human nature through the use of the science of economics. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
Entertaining but light on details See more (23 total) »



James Ransone

Tempestt Bledsoe ... Herself (archive footage)

Morgan Spurlock ... Himself - Narrator

Melvin Van Peebles ... Himself - Narrator (segment "It's Not Always A Wonderful Life")

Bill Gates ... Himself

Greg Crowe ... Johnny the Mechanic

Alisha Nagarsheth ... Student

Zoe Sloane ... Blake
Sarah Croce ... Yoga Instructor

Lian Amado ... High School Girl (as Lian Toni Amado)

Rahmel Long ... Courtroom Audience

Kahiry Bess ... Deshawn
Konishiki ... Himself
John D. Rockefeller ... Himself

Dan Chen ... Bruce-Cubicle Worker
Barry Eisler ... Himself
Akebono ... Himself
Kelli Chaves ... High School Girl

Amancaya Aguilar ... Mercedes

Mala Wright ... Courtroom Audience
Ngozi Jane Anyanwu ... Uneek
Steven Levitt ... Himself - Author
Blaire Whitney ... High School Girl
Nicholas Tong ... Dwight-Cubicle Worker
Stephen Dubner ... Himself - Co-Author
Veronica Heffron ... Courtroom Audience
Jalani McNair ... Loser Lane
Francie Scanlon ... Courtroom Audience
Andrew Greiche ... Jake

Jade Viggiano ... High School Girl
Tara Hall ... High School Girl
Adesuwa Addy Iyare ... Temptress' Mom
Emily Shaw ... Stripper
J. Avery Shoates ... Young Temptress
Erin Renee Taylor ... High School Girl
Hassan Brown ... Deshawn's Dad
Peter Zerneck ... All American Dad / Marmaduke
Richard Kohn ... Judge Ignatius Lyons
Adam Kaufman ... Angry Deli Owner
Michael Worthington ... Baliff
Danielle Sabrina ... High School Girl
Laura Wattenberg ... Herself
Sendhil Mullainathan ... Himself (as Dr. Sendhil Mullainathan)
Lisa Sobin ... High School Girl
Ashley Bryan ... Jake's Mom
Davida Kelly ... Bobbi
Roland Fryer ... Himself
Kellie Gerardi ... Lexus
Terence B. Exodus ... Courtroom Audience
Carl Alleyne ... Temptress' Mom's Boyfriend
Almudin Ally ... Courtroom Audience
Maya Cain ... Baby Temptress
Mark Dorsey ... Jake's Dad
Loren Cagno ... High School Girl
Keenan Pollack ... All American Infant / Gidget
Shae Weber ... All American Daughter / Alabama
Paul Matulef ... Courtroom Audience
Jameesha Blackburn ... Uneque
Alyssa Wheeldon ... High School Girl
Nikoli ... Winner Lane
Peggy Davern ... Courtroom Audience
Emma Meyers ... Angela-Cubicle Worker
Mark Getman ... Murray
Ron Douglas ... Robert Lane
Richard Kohn ... Judge Ignatius Lyons
Cheyenne Bascoe ... Temptress
Tyler J. Gilmore ... Kevin-Cubicle Worker
Mike MacAllister ... Himself
Kristina Hovey ... Stripper
Hector Palacios ... Courtroom Audience
Mark Fernandes ... Courtroom Audience
Christina Duran ... All American Mom / Tallulah
James Leibow ... Himself
Leslie Marx ... Courtroom Audience
Lori Richardson ... Deshawn's Mom
Nicholas Bulba ... All American Son / Rufus
Loshona ... Uneqqee

Bill Clinton ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)

Dan Rather ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)

Directed by
Heidi Ewing 
Alex Gibney 
Seth Gordon 
Rachel Grady 
Eugene Jarecki 
Morgan Spurlock 
Writing credits
Peter Bull (written by) (segment "Pure Corruption") &
Alex Gibney (written by) (segment "Pure Corruption")

Jeremy Chilnick (written by) (segment "A Roshanda by Any Other Name") &
Morgan Spurlock (written by) (segment "A Roshanda by Any Other Name")

Eugene Jarecki (written by) (segment "It's Not Always a Wonderful Life")

Heidi Ewing (written by) (segment "Can a Ninth Grader Be Bribed to Succeed?") &
Rachel Grady (written by) (segment "Can a Ninth Grader Be Bribed to Succeed?")

Seth Gordon (written by) (intro and transitional segments)

Steven Levitt (book) (as Steven D. Levitt) and
Stephen Dubner (book) (as Stephen J. Dubner)

Produced by
Craig Atkinson .... producer
Peter Bull .... segment producer
Hilary Carr .... co-producer
Peter Cerbin .... co-producer
Rafi Chaudry .... co-producer
Jeremy Chilnick .... segment producer
Paul Fiore .... executive producer
Joanna Forscher .... co-segment producer (as Joanna Chejade-Bloom)
Kathleen Fournier .... segment producer
Alex Gibney .... segment producer
Christina Gonzalez .... line producer
Seth Gordon .... executive producer
Alexandra Johnes .... segment producer
Sloane Klevin .... co-producer
Erika Knowles .... associate producer
Damon Martin .... executive producer
Dan O'Meara .... producer
Jay Rifkin .... executive producer
Michael Roban .... executive producer
Mary Rohlich .... segment producer
Chris Romano .... producer
Melinda Shopsin .... co-producer
Michiko Toyama .... associate producer
Chad Troutwine .... producer
Original Music by
Paul Brill 
Craig DeLeon  (as Craig Deleon)
Michael Furjanic 
Mike MacAllister 
Peter Nashel 
Jon Spurney 
Michael Wandmacher 
Cinematography by
Junji Aoki 
Derek Hallquist 
Tony Hardmon 
Darren Lew 
Daniel Marracino 
Ferne Pearlstein 
Rob VanAlkemade 
Film Editing by
Douglas Blush 
Tova Goodman 
Sloane Klevin 
Luis Lopez 
Nelson Ryland 
Michael Taylor 
Art Direction by
Joe Posner 
Makeup Department
Nicole Khitrik .... makeup artist
Mindi Levinson .... key makeup artist
Production Management
Alexandra Johnes .... post-production supervisor
Shirel Kozak .... production manager
Sound Department
Peter Buccellato .... sound recordist
Travis Call .... audio post coordinator
Bill Chesley .... sound designer
Rusty Dunn .... sound effects editor
Brian Fish .... sound mixer
Matt Geldof .... sound recordist
Steve Giammaria .... assistant re-recording mixer
Steve Giammaria .... sound editor
Lewis Goldstein .... sound re-recording mixer
David Hocs .... sound recordist
Christopher Koch .... sound re-recording mixer
Shuji Kosaki .... sound recordist
Cate Montana .... dialogue editor
Ryan M. Price .... voiceover recordist
Alex Riordan .... production sound mixer: Chicago
Tom Ryan .... adr recordist
Matt Vogel .... sound mixer
Tony Volante .... sound re-recording mixer
Elmo Weber .... sound re-recording mixer
Visual Effects by
Marie Deleon .... di producer
Billy Gabor .... DI colorist
Marci Ichimura .... visual effects lead
Lewis Kofsky .... visual effects and animation producer
Jess Mireau .... motion graphics
Brian Oakes .... motion graphics producer
Mark Rubbo .... visual effects
Clay Tweel .... visual effects (as J. Clay Tweel)
Chris Wiseman .... conforming hd editor
Camera and Electrical Department
Jillian Arnold .... first assistant camera: introductoin and transitional segments
Craig Atkinson .... additional cinematogrpher
Ben Bloodwell .... additional cinematography
Hisashi Kikuchi .... assistant camera
Ronan Killeen .... second camera
Philip J. Martinez .... additional Steadicam operator
William O'Marra .... second camera
Antonio Rossi .... additional cinematography
Animation Department
Matthew Foglia .... 3D animation supervisor
Editorial Department
Simon Barker .... supervising editor
Dan Bowhers .... technical assistance
Marc Brown .... film output: digital intermediate
Rob Burgos .... colorist (segment: Can a Ninth Grader Be Bribed to Succeed?)
Daniel DiMauro .... assistant editor
Andrew Doga .... assistant editor
Paul Frost .... supervising editor
Dan Hacker .... assistant editor
Jeff Hedberg .... technical assistance
Benjamin Murray .... on-line editor
Ben Sozanski .... first assistant editor
Clay Tweel .... assistant editor (as J. Clay Tweel)
Location Management
Philip Dann .... location manager
Rolando Hudson .... location manager
Music Department
Susie Bench .... orchestrator
Paul Brill .... composer: additional music
Michael Wandmacher .... orchestrator: introduction and transitional segments
Other crew
Audra Arnaudon .... production coordinator
Erin Barnett .... assistant to director
Sam Black .... researcher
Caitlin Bray .... assistant to director
Sarah Carleton .... assistant to executive producer
Jacqueline Eckhouse .... production counsel
Eline Gordts .... intern
Amna Hafiz .... intern
Emmy Suzuki Harris .... interpreter
Emmy Suzuki Harris .... production coordinator
Kordula Hildebrandt .... public relations: Hildebrandt Film
Brian Nils Johnson .... production assistant
Susan Johnson .... researcher
Barbara Karen .... production accountant
Nate McCallister .... intern
Nicholas Nummerdor .... production assistant
Dana O'Keefe .... sales agent
Nicholas Ray .... intern
Daniel Schloss .... production assistant
Sara Schweizer .... production assistant
Siobhan Shields .... production assistant
Christopher St. John .... researcher
Robert Stein .... legal services
Yukari Watanabe .... interpreter
Henriette Wollmann .... legal consultant: international sales
Zachary Skipp .... intern (uncredited)
Robert Edwards .... thanks
Edward Eglin .... special thanks
Aidan Ferreria .... special thanks
Christine Ferreria .... special thanks
Brian Galvin .... special thanks
Nova Jacobs .... special thanks
Helen Kay .... thanks
Jeremy Rabb .... special thanks
Daniel A. West .... special thanks

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated PG-13 for elements of violence, sexuality/nudity, drugs, and brief strong language
93 min | USA:85 min
Sound Mix:
Germany:6 | Japan:G | Singapore:NC-16 | USA:PG-13 (certificate #46215)

Did You Know?

Himself - Author:The closest thing to a worldview, I would say, in "Freakonomics," is that incentives matter. Not just financial incentives, but social incentives and moral incentives.See more »
Movie Connections:
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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful.
Entertaining but light on details, 7 August 2013
Author: Promontorium from San Diego, CA

This isn't really a documentary. A few of the chapters from the book are presented in this film. The way the issues are presented usually involve first Levitt and Dubner speaking about the issue interspersed with various imagery and animation. Some archival footage is used. Particularly when the topic addresses famous historical events. Each segment will also have actors re-enacting events or acting out original scenes to present the topic visually. There are also other experts or people who call themselves experts (like an "expert" in baby names) talking about the issue. Finally there is some footage of actual people either discussing personal experiences, or in the case of the high school students, the students themselves living their lives. Although even this seems staged at points.

It seems they used a lot of flashy graphics and various forms of presentation to cover up the fact that this film is ultimately Levitt, Dubner and the narrator just talking generally about the issues covered in the book. I'm a fan of the podcast so if this film had just been them talking and nothing else I'd still have liked it. But there is a sense of lacking an opportunity in creating something new on film. All the colorful imagery doesn't bring anything new to the table.

The film doesn't cover the entire book. I haven't read it in years but one of the more important topics to me was about the drug dealers which wasn't in the film.

What I found really lacking, beyond the visual or the missing chapters, is that they didn't really go into detail with anything. They vaguely reference statistics, but hardly show any. They make off handed comments about important concepts that they don't spend any time on. Two of the most important themes of the entire work, causation vs. causality, and the power of incentive are hardly discussed beyond the immediate topic. For example while they note in the film that people often mistake correlation with causation, and that finding cause is very difficult, they don't spend a second actually explaining why cause is difficult to ascertain (except that it isn't immediately apparent). Day one of a social science course is going to identify the difficulty or impossibility of defining cause. Levitt and Dubner do not mention that while statistics and economics in the scope of numbers is natural science, their application in Freakonomics is social science, and all the stats in the world won't necessarily prove cause in social science.

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