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With Jim Sabatini

Where To Invade Next

Where To Invade Next

Rated: R for language, some violent images, drug use and brief graphic nudity.
Reviewed by: Jim  
Release date: December 23, 2015 Released by: Dog Eat Dog Films

Michael Moore's latest vagarious polemic slated to go wide just before Valentine's Day can finally be tedious and protracted but is oddly propitious in finding new ways to do things in the United States. It's possible he could earn another Best Documentary nod whose intent may be more in line with the highest grosser in the genre, his hot-button pusher Fahrenheit 9/11. Which may have swayed some leftists but hardly nationally in the idea of political change.

A deceptively titled Where To Invade Next has the controversial guerrilla and capricious filmmaker eponymously globetrotting with little subtlety mostly around Europe along with Tunisia in a non-fictional feature that may reach more viewership than his ill-fated Capitalism: A Love Story over half-a-dozen years ago.

From a Tunisian journalist to a Finnish administrator (Kristin Kiuru) and American teacher (Tim Walker) there the thrust is toward Americans in a soft Socialistic sell, in a neglect of global culture, while not digging that much into what's lurching domestically. Bred often by corruption, fear, greed, and prejudice as clips of social injustice, welfare, prison issues, not to mention the Ferguson, Mo. are inserted to get the message across. Though not really in a myopic, preachy kind of way in what is consistent with other Moore films like Sicko and Bowling For Columbine.

In France there happens to be gourmet lunches for elementary school pupils (with many cheeses to choose from and an appetizer of scallops, anyone?) while eight weeks of paid vacation is offered in Italy as residents are left aghast that the U.S. doesn't have anything similar in place. Slovenia takes care of university tuition for students who aren't faced with huge loans to pay off. Nuremberg Germany and Lisbon is visited with the former acknowledging a national original sin. Finland is really exceptional in its educational prowess (reminding some viewers of Waiting For Superman). And, Norway displays noticeable importance on restitution for its convicts. A maximum security facility has a recording studio and "We Are The World" is heard though the guards aren't the most accomplished musicians.

Maybe tapping into the best elements of other foreign nations can be considered a gimmicky press tour, but Moore isn't really trying to be that much of a travelogue schemer. From Iceland and Tunisia to help ensure there's a no place like home adage perhaps his approachable chaperone the right stuff from their largesse can be possible without incredulity when Invade feels more progressively grounded with distaff potency.

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