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Citizen Koch (2013)

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A documentary that follows the money behind the rise of the Tea Party.


Carl Deal, Tia Lessin


Carl Deal, Tia Lessin
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
David H. Koch ... Himself - Founder, Americans for Prosperity
Charles G. Koch Charles G. Koch ... Himself - Founder, Americans for Prosperity
Scott Walker Scott Walker ... Himself - Governor, Wisconsin
Floyd Abrams Floyd Abrams ... Himself - Argued in Support of Citizens United
Ellen Weintraub Ellen Weintraub ... Herself - Chair, Federal Election Commission
Trevor Potter Trevor Potter ... Himself - Former Chair, Federal Election Commission
Russ Feingold Russ Feingold ... Himself - Former Senator, Wisconsin
Bob Edgar Bob Edgar ... Himself - Former Representative, Pennsylvania
Buddy Roemer Buddy Roemer ... Himself - Former Governor, Louisiana
Mike McCabe Mike McCabe ... Himself - Executive Director, Wisconsin Democracy Campaign
Lee Fang Lee Fang ... Himself - Author, The Machine: A Field Guide to the Resurgent Right
Peter Barca Peter Barca ... Himself - State Representative, Wisconsin
Jon Erpenbach Jon Erpenbach ... Himself - State Senator, Wisconsin
Mari Jo Kabat Mari Jo Kabat ... Herself - Public School Worker
Brian Cunningham Brian Cunningham ... Himself - Correctional Officer


When Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker stripped state workers of their union rights in 2011, was it simply a classic face-off between labor and management, or a bold political move designed to weaken his party's political opposition? Set against the rise of the Tea Party and Occupy movements, the US Supreme Court's 2010 ruling in Citizens United, and the 2012 presidential campaign, Citizen Koch documents the consequences for democracy when private interests determine who is elected to deliver public good. Written by Anonymous

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A hundred million ways to stick it to you.


Documentary | Drama



Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site





Release Date:

January 2013 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Гражданин Кох See more »

Filming Locations:

Wisconsin, USA


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$10,200, 8 June 2014, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$153,908, 25 July 2014
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Company Credits

Production Co:

Elsewhere Films See more »
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Technical Specs



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Did You Know?


The film launched a kickstarter campaign for distribution after the Independent Television Service (ITVS), a public agency that funds and curates independent documentaries, pulled $150,000 it had previously committed. See more »


References Citizen Kane (1941) See more »

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User Reviews

Weak Documentary that Tells You Nothing about the Koch Brothers
8 August 2014 | by TheExpatriate700See all my reviews

Citizen Koch has received some hype based on the fact that PBS refused to air it, reportedly for fear of offending contributor David Koch. Although I cannot discount the possibility of Koch suppressing the film, after having seen the film, it seems just as likely that the film was dumped for poor quality.

Simply put, this film tells you nothing about the Koch Brothers that someone interested enough to watch it would not already know. The Koch Brothers don't even appear in the film that much, figuring in perhaps fifteen minutes of an hour and a half film. Rather than an expose of the Koch Brothers, it is a generalized rant against money in politics, mostly focusing on Wisconsin.

All too often, Citizen Koch fails to explore potentially interesting avenues of investigation. For instance, at one point, the film mentions that the brothers' father was the founder of the extremist John Birch Society. In a better documentary, the filmmakers would have explored their father's influence on them. Are the Koch Brothers still involved in the Society? You can't tell from watching this.

Instead, we get seemingly endless interviews with ordinary Wisconsinites expressing their disapproval of Scott Walker. Most of this will be familiar to anyone even remotely interested in politics. The only twist the filmmakers bring is that they make a point of featuring disgruntled working class Republicans, showing that money in politics is not just a liberal issue. It is open to question how receptive the film's target audience was to this message, though. At the screening I attended, a number of audience members laughed at the thought of a working class Republican.

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