Wednesday, November 13, 2019

The Kingmaker, Movie Review by Cecilia Brainard in Positively Filipino

Movie Review: "The Kingmaker" Shows the Fragility of Democracy, review by Cecilia Brainard, published in Positively Filipino:

"There was a false rumor that Imelda Marcos had funded the documentary The Kingmaker. In fact, the movie depicts Imelda Marcos, the central character, as a Marie-Antoinette-type with an excessively lavish lifestyle, voracious greed, lack of genuine empathy, and single-mindedness in achieving power by first scheming with her husband, the Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos, and now her son, Bongbong Marcos.

To better understand the film, one needs to know that the filmmaker, Lauren Greenfield, had made the 2012 documentary, The Queen of Versailles, about the billionaire Siegel family and their surreal world of material excess. Jackie Siegel, for instance, owned a $17,000 pair of Gucci shoes.

The same sort of material excess drew Greenfield into making The Kingmaker. She had learned about a pet project of Imelda Marcos, the Island of Calauit in the Philippines, which is populated by giraffes, zebras, gazelles, impalas, and other exotic animals. In the 1970s Imelda Marcos had gone on a Kenya safari and decided to bring to the Philippines some of the animals she had seen. A bribe was paid since the import of such animals was prohibited; the Island of Calauit was cleared of its human inhabitants, and Imelda’s Safari Park project was born. The residents who were displaced from Calauit still recall with bitterness how they had been unceremoniously dispatched from their homes.... (continue reading in Positively Filipino" )

Tags: review, movie, documentary, film, Lauren Greenfield, Marcos, history, politics