The Emperor's New Clothes DVD Review

DVD Review by Andy Box
The Emperor’s New Clothes

The Premise
Starting with the genesis of today’s economic policies, with the arrival of Milton Friedman’s school of thought in Reagan’s leadership and Thatcher’s UK, the film explores how these policies have come to dominate the western world. The rich have got richer; where a CEO of a major British company used to earn 10 times the average wage of his workers, now they earn 200 times. According to Oxfam, the richest 80 people in the world own as much as the poorest 3.5 billion.

The Review
Brand’s political documentary set to rustle up interest but will it change anything?
Russell Brand is a likable fellow who does a little bit of everything. His personality, boyish charm and down to earth demeanor make him an engaging hero.
His new documentary ‘The Emperor’s new Clothes’ is in part an attack on the banking system and  the bonus’s that were paid out in 2008 following the global financial crisis. Interlaced with this main theme are working class comparisons from families and people who have the single parent, work 15 hours a day, not enough disposable income and who might lose their home background.

All nicely tied up with Brands satirical narration and analysis

The subject matter works and the film is well done. The compatibility of news footage, interviews, hard-facts with real life stories and Brand’s straight talking but often brutal wit make this an entertaining watch.

Michael Winterbottom (Welcome to Sarajevo, 24 hour party people) directs and writes this documentary and whilst his work gives Brand a vehicle to make pertinent points on issues that some feel strongly about, Brand’s charisma and the tough questions only go so far.

As a result the movie lacks the depth of embarrassment that Michael Moores work often have and by the end of the movie one is left feeling a little cheated.

Having said this there are emotional and engaging moments where Millionaire Brand connects with working class families and their plight.
Will this documentary change anything?  Will it ask enough uncomfortable questions to make a difference? As the capitalist machine rolls on I very much doubt it.

The Verdict

Russell brand as an actor turned activist is definitely a watchable work in progress. However 5/10 for the content and message in this documentary.

The Trailer

The Info
DVD Releases: 4th November 2015
Rating: M – Contains offensive language
Duration: 101 minutes 
Genre:  Documentary
Starring: Russell Brand

Director: Michael Winterbottom (The Trip)