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Bowling for Columbine

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United States, Canada, Germany · 2002
2h 0m
Director Michael Moore
Starring Michael Moore, George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush, Charlton Heston
Genre Documentary, Drama

Why do 11,000 people die in America each year by gun violence? The talking heads yelling from TV blame everything from Satan to video games. But are we that much different from many other countries? How have we become the master and victim of such enormous amounts of violence? This is not a film about gun control, but about the fearful heart and soul of America.

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What are critics saying?


Film Threat by

It’s a welcome addition to the national debate, which while not always on the money, is consistently thoughtful, smart and thoroughly satisfying.


The New Yorker by David Denby

When he follows his nose -- say, by tracing his own connections to Eric Harris, one of the Columbine shooters -- he implicates himself in what he hates and fears, and he emerges as a wounded patriot searching for a small measure of clarity. [28 October 2002, p. 119]


New York Daily News by Jami Bernard

Moore brilliantly unmasks the inanity of the arguments used in the debate over gun control in America. He then undermines himself by leaping into the blame game without supporting his central thesis, that the media is what makes teens like the ones at Columbine turn around and shoot up their schools.


Los Angeles Times by Kenneth Turan

Moore's concern about issues is genuine, and his showboating technique is often entertaining. But he is not the most organized person in the world, and there is a scattershot randomness about this film that is both its essence and a source of frustration.


Charlotte Observer by Lawrence Toppman

At its best, the movie powerfully indicts our violent history. A montage of bloody U.S. interventions in foreign affairs over the last half-century, most overthrowing elected governments we didn't like, left me shaken.


The Globe and Mail (Toronto) by Rick Groen

Moore continues another one infinitely more valuable -- the proud line that extends right back to Mark Twain, embracing all those satirists so enamoured with America at its best that they won't stand silent for America at its worst.


Seattle Post-Intelligencer by William Arnold

It's vintage Moore: on one level the courageous act of a gutsy journalist, and, on another, a callously unfair and self-serving spectacle that makes Moore seem like a big bully, and puts his audience into the position of a vigilante mob.

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