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The Shock Doctrine (2009)

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An investigation of "disaster capitalism", based on Naomi Klein's proposition that neo-liberal capitalism feeds on natural disasters, war and terror to establish its dominance.

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Drawing surprising connections between market methods and CIA torture techniques developed in the 1950s, the film explores how well-known events of the recent past have been theaters for the shock doctrine, from Pinochet's coup in Chile, to the Tiananmen Square Massacre, to the war in Iraq today.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ewen Cameron ...
Himself (archive footage) (as Dr. Ewen Cameron)
Janine Huard ...
Herself
...
Herself
...
Himself (archive footage) (as Franklin Delano Roosevelt)
Milton Friedman ...
Himself
...
Himself (archive footage)
Donald O. Hebb ...
Himself - Doctor (as Donald Hebb)
...
Himself (archive footage)
Edward Korry ...
Himself - Former US Ambassador to Chile
Augusto Pinochet ...
Himself (archive footage)
...
Herself (archive footage)
Orlando Letelier ...
Himself (archive footage)
Michael Townley ...
Himself
Arnold Harberger ...
Himself
Jorge Rafael Videla ...
Himself (archive footage) (as Jorge Videla)
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Storyline

Naomi Klein gives a lecture tracing the confluence of ideas about modifying behavior using shock therapy and other sensory deprivation and modifying national economics using the "shock treatment" of Milton Friedman and the Chicago School. She moves chronologically: Pinochet's Chile, Argentina and its junta, Yeltsin's Russia, Bush and Bremer's Iraq. A trumped-up villain provides distraction or rationalization: Marxism, the Falklands, nuclear weapons, terrorists; and, always, there is a great shift of money and power from the many to the few. News footage, a narrator, and talking heads back up Klein's analysis. She concludes on a note of hope. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

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Documentary

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Release Date:

3 March 2010 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Doktrina soka  »

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| (work in progress)

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Did You Know?

Quotes

[first lines]
Naomi Klein: A state of shock is something that happens to us not only when something bad happens. It's what happens to us when we lose our narrative, when we lose our story, when we become disoriented.
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Connections

References Fargo (1996) See more »

Soundtracks

original soundtrack excerpts
from The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover (1989)
Written by Michael Nyman
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User Reviews

 
Outstanding!
3 July 2010 | by (Netherlands) – See all my reviews

After watching this film with a few friends (one of which was a former World bank employee), we had a rather mixed and somewhat heated conversation in the cinema bar. The film is basically a summary of the book, which talks about the ideas of Milton Friedman and how they have been used to influence world affairs. However, for those of you who may find the film 'superficial' I would recommend the book, as there is much more detail. Regarding the objectivity of the film, I don't believe that it's anti-American or anti-capitalistic (as my world bank friend remarked). Quite the contrary, it is very balanced and in my opinion Klein does not point a finger at a company without first presenting the facts. I think what a lot of pro-capitalists probably find annoying about Klein is that she brings the whole idea of multinational dirty dealings and currents affairs into the spotlight. After all, Halliburton, Shell, BP, the World bank etc. are far from angels when it comes to making money! I for one, commend the producers of this film and Mrs. Klein for a job well done!


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