Monday, November 23, 2009

"American Faust - From Condi To Neo Condi" - A Review

As you all know, I've been attending the Starz Denver Film Festival for the past twelve days (or thereabouts) and have seen many great movies (of which I will write later). I've also been able to meet, photograph, and interview some of the filmmakers. Overall, it has been very fun. That's my overall generic review. More on that later. For now I'd like to get into the discussion of one film in particular.

American Faust - From Condi to Neo Condi

Condoleezza Rice is a war criminal. And she has gotten away with it, whether out of fear of her power by those who should be pressing charges, or by indifference to the atrocities she initiated/allowed/ordered. After seeing this documentary film, which I recommend you do, you cannot plead ignorance anymore of her involvement in torture, pardoning of the Blackwater killers, and starting a war and continuing said war under false pretenses.

The film, by director Sebastian Doggart, takes a more objective approach, tracking Condoleezza's life from her early days in segregated Alabama all the way to her time as US Secretary of State. Along the timeline, as the Faustian title suggests, Condoleezza makes decisions, takes opportunities, that increase her power while her ideals drop off one by one, seemingly without emotion.

There is no narration in this documentary. It relies solely on interviews, testimonials, news clips, and expert opinions of people in Rice's life, with both positive and negative impact. Condoleezza's life is such an interesting story about an intelligent and compelling woman, and if it was fiction I would love the twists it takes. The problem is that it is real and it is horrifying. Left unchecked, power leads to corruption, and in the name of protection, through pre-emptive strikes and enhanced torture techniques, to the demise of any moral standing our country could wish to have.

This is a well-made and compelling film which I would recommend everyone watch. But don't just watch it. Act upon it. Write to your Congressperson (find out who they are and how to contact them here (send an actual letter if you can)). Demand action be taken.

I welcome any feedback, either before or after you see the film. Commit to seeing this documentary. The decisions, past and present, the people in government make ripple through the world. The bad decisions, some made for personal gain, some for seemingly the right reasons but with the wrong tactics, can accumulate into a tidal wave of hatred which we may not be able to stop. We need to act now and hold accountable those who made the decisions, by using the laws we have established so these crimes should not have happened in the first place. Otherwise, what are we but complicit?

You can buy or download this film from starting December 2, 2009 or find out more at Also, you can become a fan of American Faust on Facebook to stay up to date with the film's developments.

I also conducted an interview with the director, Sebastian Doggart, which you can listen to here, or by going to my podcast page at

Next time, I will return to more jovial topics, including my interview with Matthew Bissonnette (director of the film "Passenger Side") and Joel Bissonnette (actor in the film "Passenger Side"), and my interview with actor Adam Scott ("Passenger Side", "The Vicious Kind", Starz TV comedy "Party Down", and "Step Brothers").

With Highest Regard,


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