My take on Michael Moore:
He has met with such critical acclaim in part because the liberal, politically correct crowd think there is some kind of valor in being such a hideous creature. They think someone that homely and un-intercoursable would never lie to them.
I went to see Roger & Me when it was first released. I found this film mildly amusing but heavy-handed. R&M revolved around MM trying to corner Roger Smith (then-CEO of General Motors) and needle him over layoffs at GM.
I've always been a film buff, and in my early 20s I was going to at least a couple films a week, sometimes more. This film interested me because people raved about it, but some things rather stuck in my craw. The tradition of documentary until that point had typically involved the film maker being entirely off-screen, and on rare occasions, simply voicing questions from behind the camera. In R&M, MM hogs the screen and can't get enough of the sight of himself, fat and winded, chasing after the suited, freshly powdered Roger Smith. Again, I go back to my original premise that the knee-jerk reaction to this would be that "here, this revolting person has put himself out there and gone to the mat to get the real information for us and has brought us a big bowl of truth. How heroic." I think the truth is that, high on his own armpit vapors, Michael Moore is in love with the sight of himself. Yes, as inexplicable as it may seem, his primary purpose in making films is of a Narcissistic bent. (And now Al Gore is tip-toeing through the tulips on the shining path MM has blazed. Joy.)
Think about it, in all the years of your life, how many documentary film makers can you even remember ever having seen on camera in their projects?
There you go.
The other thing about R&M was the interviews he did with people who had been laid off from GM, which presented the story in a manner carefully engineered to evoke a negative emotional response from the viewer so they would ultimately take a bad feeling about Roger Smith away from the theater with them. One particular subject was a white-trashy sort of woman MM interviewed outdoors. The camera and MM followed her about her rounds on her property, where she killed and butchered a rabbit on camera during the interview. Overkill? Well, I think the granola-munching PC crowd who would typically go see a documentary like this would be the very type to be outraged by the sight of abattoir-type activities. See what this poor woman was driven to by Roger Smith?!!! Never mind the fact that most of us eat meat-- we live at remove from the idea that our meat grows on animals and someone needs to kill it first. MM exploits what is surely the first killing of an animal for food that many city dwellers ever saw. I'll bet there are lots of vegetarians whose restrictive diets found their origins in that very scene. *much eye-rolling here*
Now, if you or I took a film crew to try to get an interview from Ted Turner or Oprah or Michael Moore himself by following same, it would be called stalking and we'd be jailed forthwith.
That's entertainment? What absolute twaddle.