If you have missed the reviews, they have been amazing.
“Should be essential viewing.” John Anderson, NEWSDAY
“The picture it paints is scarier than anything offered by any of Hollywood’s recycled gore-fests.” James Berardinelli, REELVIEWS
“A thoroughly fascinating and horrifying documentary about the giant corporate house of cards that came crashing down on the heads of all the little people while the big guys cashed out for mega-millions, smirking all the way.” Jami Bernard, NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
“The Smartest Guys in the Room lays bare, in funny and shocking video clips, the culture of arrogance at Enron.” Owen Gleiberman, ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY
“Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room is not only a great cautionary tale, it’s a civics lesson that should be seen by every concerned citizen.” James Greenberg, HOLLYWOOD REPORTER
“Less corporate noir than capitalist disaster film.” J. Hoberman, VILLAGE VOICE
“By turns amazing, amusing and appalling.” Joe Leydon, VARIETY
“This cinematic scrutiny of runaway corporate greed reveals the nightmarish rapaciousness of those who engineered the fraud.” Claudia Puig, USA TODAY
“This is a brilliantly executed, brutally entertaining dissection of what one observer called the greatest corporate fraud in American history.” Richard Roeper, EBERT & ROEPER
“This sober, informative chronicle of the biggest business scandal of the decade is almost indecently entertaining.” A.O. Scott, NEW YORK TIMES
“The story is fascinating, infuriating and even laugh-out-loud funny at times.” Russell Scott Smith, NEW YORK POST
“Alex Gibney’s riveting documentary is a rape story, with the public trust as the victim.”
Peter Travers, ROLLING STONE
The buzz continues to build. The blogosphere has been talking it up as well. As is the case in the blogworld, they are even starting to create a little bit of controversy. In a Q^A session this week at the San Fran Film Festival, Alex Gibney the Director of the film said that CNBC claimed to have erased all of their footage involving Enron. It will be interesting to find out if everyone is on the same page there.
For those outside of Houston and NY, the movie opens comes to a theater near you starting April 29th. In Houston, it continues at the River Oaks and in NYC at the Sunshine and Lincoln Plaza.
April 29th… Please check it out and let me know what you think about it!
Finally, here is a note from Director Alex Gibney aboutthe movie:
Even though the story of Enron is a great human tragedy, I hope it makes you laugh.
The fact is that, from a distant perspective, the events are funny. An executive addicted to strippers, accountants making up the numbers, our most prestigious banks handing out deals to criminals that they would never consider giving to honest working people, a body-builder taking charge of California – the world’s 7th largest economy – because his political allies shut the lights off all over the state. There are skits – skits! – by Enron execs about the scams they pulled. And while the company is going down the tubes, the CEO stresses over fabric swatches for the G5 jet.
Yet, as the music makes clear, this is a black comedy, where every laugh has an undertow of moral outrage. As Tom Waits sings in the final song: “Who are the ones we kept in charge? Killers, thieves and lawyers. God’s away…God’s away…God’s away… on business!”
At the end of the day, I hope that watching the film makes you as angry as it made me when I was making it. This is the cinema v?t?ersion of the Titanic: a few people sailed off in gilt-edged lifeboats while everyone else drowned. (Again, Tom Waits – and his co-writer Kathleen Brennan: “There’s a leak, there’s a leak in the boiler room…”) But unlike the Titanic, the fault for Enron’s collapse is not limited to a few executives. As the film shows, our major investment banks, our accounting firms, our lawyers – indeed the very government that is supposed to protect us – all aided and abetted Enron in doing what it did.
Enron’s slogan on its surrealistic ads was “Ask Why.” It was supposed to suggest that Enron was an innovative company because it questioned conventional wisdom. Looking back, I think “ask why” was one of those clues that master criminals leave for detectives. “Ask why,” Enron’s earnings were so good when so little cash was coming in the door. But now, way beyond that, we should all “ask why” such a thing could have happened.
I hope you enjoy the film. I hope you laugh and I hope it makes you mad as hell.