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On any normal day I'd sooner boil my head than watch a documentary with that in mind, it was with trepidation that I pressed 'play' on Deborah Louise Robinson's directorial debut, LAST WILL AND EMBEZZLEMENT. This film however offered something seldom seen in documentaries; real heart. The film's simple approach works well; It's factual, eye-opening, thought-provoking look at the horrendous crime of elder abuse tells it like it is, but with such a tenderness that it never feels detached or cold. Elder exploitation is a global problem that is about to become a lot worse this film gets the facts out there, plain and simple. The viewer doesn't have to fight through a fog of cinematography to find them either. Effective in its simplicity, LAST WILL AND EMBEZZLEMENT left me with no questions unanswered Job done! Last Will and Embezzlement, with the help of some wonderful experts in the field, explores fully the different techniques used to exploit money and property from the elderly. The signs that we can all look out for, and the reason that this ghastly crime is about to become a world-wide epidemic. Last Will's producer, Pamela Glasner suffered at the hands of a complete stranger, who managed with seemingly little effort to waltz into the nursing home where her Dad, who suffered with Alzheimer's was residing, hand him Power of Attorney and walk away with full control of his money. She knows only too well, the at times unbearable pain this crime leaves in its wake. And how ultimately futile the pursuit of justice can be. She wanted to give the victims a voice and Last Will and Embezzlement was born. I know that some will find certain scenes uncomfortable to watch. To see Hollywood icon Mickey Rooney crumble on screen, as he tells his harrowing tale of being embezzled from within his own family is difficult to experience. And to observe two sisters devastated by the exploitation of their mother is not an easy watch either. The devastation caused by these crimes is not comfortable or easy but it does need to be seen. The decision to have actor Artie Pasquale narrate direct to camera was spot on. He delivers with such sentiment and heart that although previously missing my radar, I found him to be both informative and likable and I warmed to him instantly. Last Will is well made, by people who care, and it shows.
Last Will and Embezzlement tackles the taboo subject of elder abuse in
a simple but effective way. With shared knowledge from a wealth of
credible experts, it tells us exactly what to look out for and how
those seeking to extort money go about their seedy business.
I found this film starring Hollywood icon Mickey Rooney to be a well constructed and informative piece of work. The subject of embezzlement is covered in depth and explained without frills and camera trickery - a straight forward honest film that tells it how it is. With the ageing of 'baby boomers' the world is going to see an increase in this kind of diabolical crime, Last Will may just help to highlight the problem and bring it into the forefront of people's minds - this can be no bad thing.
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