After the recent financial crisis (which is still going on in many place in the United States and across the globe) the gap between the haves and the have not’s in the modern economy is getting so damn wide that it is hard to not notice it. “Inequality for All” is an impassioned look at the state of the middle class, but doesn’t really tell us anything new as it isn’t a secret that the ever growing income gap is a bad thing.
“Inequality For All” features Robert Reich—professor, best-selling author, and former U.S. Labor Secretary—as he demonstrates how the widening income gap has a devastating impact on the American economy, along with the patterns that the economy has shown and the ways to fix them that have worked in the past.
Labeled “An Inconvenient Truth” but for economics, it plays out very similarly, as the film’s subject Robert Reich is holding court over a classroom it works a little better than your standard talking head doc or even the one featuring Al Gore as both the host and the filmmaker make the proceedings a little more lively while putting a personal face on it all. There are intervals where the film follows Robert Reich and he makes for an affable subject as we get some background on our host and tour of the income gap. Both he and director Jacob Kornbulth make an effort to be as engaging as humanly possible, framing the cold hard economic facts around very personal stories. There is some genuine warmth behind this well structured discussion on America’s economic woes as the call to bridge the gap and get some equality back has never been louder.
Nothing in this film really shines any light on anything new, but with charming and likeable Reich in the lead as our subject and narrator, “Inequality for All” is the kind of film that serves the exact purpose that it sets out to accomplish. Hopefully serve as a reminder to not let history repeat itself, because as Reich reminds us, all this economic strife has happened before and if we are not careful it could very well happen again.
3 out of 5 stars.
“Inequality for All” opens tomorrow at the Bloor Hot Docs Cinema here in downtown Toronto, please check with listings for show times.
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